Thursday, December 29, 2011

Day 210 - Reina Sofia, Caixaforum, and the Jardin Botanical

Another major museum day... seems like all the major tourist cities in Europe include a heavy dose of museum time for visitors. But then I think about what I would show people in Los Angeles if they came to visit...and it'd be the Getty Museum and Griffith Observatory...and probably LACMA and MOCA...

I have a favorite spot for lunch already. I grabbed a bite yesterday as well as today, and I intend on going back tomorrow! The lunch wasn't spectacular, just a sandwich of some sort, but it's the desserts they make that are golden! I already have a favorite, called Rosquillas de Alcala, which is something like a hybrid between a mini glazed donut (coated with what i believe is marzipan) and turkish baklava. I don't need to gain any more weight, but I could eat a ton of these in one sitting.

Once my hunger pains subsided, I headed to the Caixaforum, a free museum that currently held a Eugene Delacroix exhibit and another called The Persistence of Geometry. The Delacroix exhibit contained artwork mostly borrowed from the Louvre and the Musee des beaux arts in France. I went to the Caixaforum in Barcelona as well, and both were free to enter. I didn't know too much about Delacroix, but I liked his style. It was very silky, the way he used his brushstrokes to create movement on his paintings, especially scenes depicting war battles or animal fights. The other exhibit was more modern art, with a lot of video and spatial exhibits. Some of the language on the walls were just too complex for me to really follow in explanation of the exhibit and its goals.

Across the street from Caixaforum was the Jardin Botanical, which was a huge enclosed garden full of various species of fruits, vegetables, and other plants. Since it was nearing winter, most of the vegetation was dying or falling off, so I suggest you skip this place if you visit in the cold months. There was a cool photo exhibition though, which presented some of the participants and winners of the Prix Pictet competition, fusing photography with sustainability to sent messages about the environmental problems we face in our world.

The last stop was at the modern art museum called the Centro de Arte Reina Sofia. This museum is HUGE. The building had 4 floors of artwork in addition to an adjacent building in the back with an additional 4 floors of artspace, and there was an overabundance of artwork on showcase when I visited. Being the last museum of the day, along with the fact that there was so much art to cover, I really ended up just skimming everything, walking quickly through each room, There was plenty of Picasso, including his famous Guernica, and plenty of Dali and Miro as well. Most of it was famous European art, and it showed the chronological development of modern art from the early 20th century to the present. I wish I got an audioguide, but I was one Euro short of securing one, and they didn't accept credit cards!

For some reason, when I headed back to my hostel, the streets were crowded with people. It seemed like everyone was coming out of a concert or something, but it may be because it was Saturday, or maybe it was because it was so close to Christmas. Either way, I was a little testy with the crowd. Too much claustrophobia!

 Rosquillas de Alcala


Somewhere in America

Reina Sofia Museum

Salvador Dali

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