Cambó i Mallol Vda. Guardans, Helena

Zurich, 1929 - Barcelona, 2021.

Daughter of Francesc Cambó i Batlle and Mercè Mallol Codina.

On exile from Spain during the Civil War (1936-1939) her family lived in Italy, Switzerland and New York until 1941, then they settled in Buenos Aires where her father died in 1947.

Helena went through primary studies in Italy, French Switzerland and also at the Sacred Heart College in New York. She again attended the Sacred Heart in Buenos Aires where she graduated in High School.

While still in Argentina, she took Classical Studies as well as Superior diplomas in French and English languages by Alliance Française and the Cambridge Trinity College.

In 1951 she married Ramon Guardans i Vallés (died in 2007), a lawyer, the couple returned to Catalunya. They settled back in Barcelona, where their fourteen children were born: nine boys and five girls, envolved by now, in a large variety of professions.

In close collaboration with her husband Helena ensured the continuity of the cultural tasks promoted by her father: actually she holds a prominent role in "Fundació Bernat Metge" (translation of Greek and Latin to Catalan), Fundació Bíblica Catalana so as Institut Cambó.

She is a member of the Board concerned with the fulfillment of Gaudi's project for the Sagrada Familia, as well as patron in the "Pro-Vida Association".

She was condecorated by the Culture Secretary with the "Lazo de Isabel la Católica", and in 1984 she received, jointly with Maria Macià, an "acknowledgement to the dignity and faithfulness in bearing her illustrious surname".

She was also admitted in the "Club d'amics de la Clau de Barcelona".

On December 15th, 1993 she was elected as patron member, in the Sculpture Department of this Royal Academy, according to the proposal submitted by Members: Josep M. Garrut Romà, Enric Jardí Casany and Frederic Udina Martorell. She was received into the Royal Academy on October 17th, 1996 when she read her speech on "Marullus the man in Botticelli's portrait" -this was refered to the picture she kept -following the father's will- when she accomplished his Legacy of fifty ancient paintings to the city of Barcelona.

Helena Cambó always considered her election for this Royal Academy as an expression of gratitude towards her father.

In 2006 she took part in "La Veu de l'Experiència", a book that offered ten recent interviews (Antoni Airà, Ed. Deria).

2010, "Creu de Sant Jordi" Generalitat de Catalunya.

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