Museum and sculptures
29.09.2009 - 03.10.2009 21 °C
I went to two of the 'big 3' museums as I had seen the Museo de Reina Sofia previously.
Prada I had been warned not to attempt to see everything at the Prada. There is simply too much - far too much. In Madrid the Spanish artists have to call and I had seen a lot of El Greco's work in Toledo. Now was the turn of Velasquez and Goya.
Predictably I enthused in my mind over Las Meninas but I think The Drinkers and The Spinners impressed me even more. As for Goya's Black Paintings, I can't say I enjoyed them; I hope I am not mad! Eating children does not fill me with jubilation - but how powerful they are!
I was advised that I would find the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza more manageable. I am not sure I should not again have been advised on what to see and what to pass quickly. It's a brilliant museum but I felt as though I should have had a crash course in the history of art before going. Having said that, i should not want to leave any impression of not having enjoyed my visit - just that I could perhaps have got still more from it.
Perhaps my comments above may make it seem less surprising that in some ways I enjoyed the Museo Sorolla most of all. Sorolla's name was unknown to me until I was researching my trip and I have spoken to people with far more knowledge of art than I who had never heard of him. Shame on us all! A Sorolla exhibition at the Prada, which I missed by days, was their best attended in ten years, the attendance well surpassing that for many names better known outside Spain.
http://museosorolla.mcu.es/!Sorolla was an ardent collector as well as a painter and the lovely house in which he lived (the museum) has fine furniture and porcelain in almost every room. As far as his paintings go, he seems to have been a master of the use of white. I was massively impressed by Madre which came from the painter's early period.
Lastly the sculptures: the Museo.De.Escultura.Al.Aire.Libre is nt a museum at all in the normal sense. One road crosses another at considerable height and there are several flights of stairs from one to the other. On both sides are fine sculptures - completely free and never closed. It's a good idea and it was worth hopping off the tourist bus but as a resident of Yorkshire I must say that in my mind this did not hold a candle to our fabulous Yorkshire Sculpture Park.