July 2005


Madrid III

The Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía is probably Madrid’s second most famous museum, and after 2:30 on Saturday afternoons, it is free to all, not just those people listed in the fine print.

I arrived at the Sofía around 3 having taken the long way there via the Atocha train station, and upon passing my backpack through the x-ray machine and putting it in a locker, I picked up my free ticket.

Museums in Madrid have an obsession with tickets, even for free things. When I went to the Prado not only did I buy my ticket to the museum, but I also got separate tickets upon entry into the two special exhibits—the free special exhibits. I got tickets to the municipal museum and the money museum as well.

The amazing thing is that they actually checked the free tickets a couple of times at the Sofía.

The Sofía is a modern art museum most famous for Picasso’s Guernica, which was painted for the 1937 Paris World’s Fair. I can honestly say that the painting mystified me. I don’t really understand its significance and why it was so important. As far as I can tell, some deranged artist painted something with a bull and some faces. (I am going to research it shortly. My opinion is subject to change, but I lacked context whilst in the museum.)

That’s the fun thing about modern art, sometimes it really is bullshit, but it’s up to each of us to decide.

Gay Scene

I didn’t get a chance to explore it until Saturday night. Unfortunately Saturday evening’s meal disagreed with me. So there was no exploration. However, it did look vibrant!

2 comments to Madrid III

  • I think the distorted faces are meant to represent the Basque victims of Franco’s bombing of Guernica in 1937; the bull is a representation of the agrarian (and non-threatening) community he bombed.

  • ChrisC

    I need a good dose of culture. Cross-burnings just are not doing it for me anymore. *shrugs*