MAJORCA Daily Bulletin publisher and President of Grup Serra media organisation, Pere A. Serra, was awarded the Balearic Gold Medal in Palma yesterday by regional President, Francesc Antich and Central Government's Culture Minister, Angeles Gonzalez-Sinde.

The ceremony was held in the Joan Miró room of the Es Baluard musuem of modern and contemporary art built into the old city walls on the Paseo Maritimo, the brainchild of Serra himself.

Pere A. Serra didn't hide his emotion at receiving the much-coveted award in an artistic setting inspired by the Catalan artist Miró, with whom Serra had forged a close friendship during the artist's many years on Majorca. “It is not by chance,” said Gonzalez-Sinde in her award speech, “that Pere Serra's receiving of the Balearic Gold Medal comes only eight months after Central Government awarded him its own Fine Arts Gold Medal. “It is not every day that someone has the drive and vision to carry their new ideas forward without renouncing their much treasured values,” she said. “Serra is above all, a humanist who has widened the public perspective of the Balearic Islands through the media and arts.” President Antich said that the Balearic Gold Medal, the highest award in the islands, had been granted to Serra for his dedication to the culture of the islands, and for his tireless work as a businessman, editor, journalist and researcher of local history.” “The Medal is the recognition,” added Antich “of a lifetime's work in the world of newspapers, including the establishment of a paper in the Catalan language, and the promotion of scenic art which has its roots in the Balearic Islands.”

In response to the award speeches, Pere A. Serra - also President of the Soller Train Art Foundation whose promotion of local culture has been much appreciated by visitors to the islands - said: “It's important to try and do something to mark the time we spend on this planet.” Pere A. Serra claimed that leaving something for future generations is a responsibility that all of us should shoulder.

He is known for championing the legacy of Balearic art and culture for the wider public and believes that the understanding of the regional heritage needs to begin with the very young.