The Cupertino de Miranda Foundation, a private foundation of general interest, based in Vila Nova de Famalicão, was created on the initiative of Arthur Cupertino de Miranda (1892-1988) and his wife, Elzira Celeste Maya de Sá Cupertino de Miranda, who allocated to the Foundation some of their personal assets and incorporated it on 15 August 1963. The Articles of Association of the Foundation were approved by the competent authority on 2 October 1963. The couple donated part of their personal estate, which included a set of shares representing 5 per cent of the share capital of Banco Português do Atlântico, with a view to the creation of an Institution whose aim was to promote culture and support those in need. Recognised as a legal person of public utility, the Foundation seeks to fulfil its cultural and social purposes. The principle that underlaid the creation of the Foundation and the definition of its statutory purposes are embodied in the first words of the Founder’s autograph reproduced on a tiled panel: ‘Let it Be in my Homeland a Temple of Art, Culture, and Kindness: Praise to Work, Honour to Knowledge, Hymn to Love, Testimony of Devotion to this People. Arthur Cupertino de Miranda, 1970.’
The Foundation was endowed with a Museum, a Library, and an Auditorium in order to develop activities for the promotion and dissemination of cultural initiatives in the different areas of expression.
The Foundation was inaugurated on 8 December 1972. The programme brought together a significant number of official entities and other guests, including the then President of the Republic, Admiral Américo Thomaz. The ceremony began in the Louro, inaugurating the Church, the Pastoral Centre, the parish housing, the Parish Council building, the People’s Home, and the Market. A procession of cars drove to the Foundation. The First Biennial of New Artists opened in the Museum, where some of the paintings of the collection of Arthur Cupertino de Miranda were exhibited. In the Library, an exhibition was also opened. Then, the solemn session was held in the Auditorium.
At the time of the Revolution of 25 April 1974, the Cupertino de Miranda Foundation was affected by the nationalisations that disturbed its financial assets.
Culturally, the activity of the Foundation has been relevant both in education and culture by means of the support that its valuable Library provides to the community as well as in the systematic programming in the Fine Arts sector. In this context, works of the Foundation’s collection and other temporary exhibitions can be enjoyed in its Museum. In the field of social assistance, the Foundation provides aid to various Organisations and Institutions, such as the Projeto Homem in Braga, a therapeutic programme for the rehabilitation and social reintegration of drug addicts. The Foundation also supports families and people in need.
The management of the Foundation, both in terms of finances and assets, as well as the planning of its activities, is ensured by a Board of Directors, an Executive Board, and a Supervisory Board.
On 30 June 1997, the Municipality of Vila Nova de Famalicão awarded the Municipality Medal of Honour to the Cupertino de Miranda Foundation.