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Five Museums that Make Málaga an Art Capital

What makes Málaga an essential visit for art lovers are these magnificent collections. Might their presence be due to Málaga being the birthplace of one of the 20th century’s leading art geniuses? To be sure, if Picasso were there to see it all, he would be proud of his hometown being so privileged. Here is a rundown of the five not-to-be-missed art spaces, two of which have just opened!

Picasso Museum of Málaga

In 1953, Pablo Picasso and Juan Temboury Álvarez, the Provincial Fine Arts Delegate for Málaga, laid the groundwork for the creation of a museum to house part of the artist’s work. But it was not until many years later – 50 years, to be exact – that the project bore fruit. This was largely thanks to the endeavours of Christine and Bernard Ruiz-Picasso, the Malagan painter’s daughter-in-law and grandson, who provided an endowment totalling 285 pieces covering 80 years of work, from 1892 to 1972. The premises chosen to house the collection were the Buenavista Palace, a Renaissance building dating from 1487, erected over the remains of a Nasrid palace of which some details have been preserved. Listed as a “national monument” in 1939, it was subsequently refurbished, enlarged and converted into a museum to house the artist’s work, as well as temporary exhibitions. During one of the latest extension works, Phoenician and Roman remains were unearthed; they now form part of the items on display on the museum circuit.

Picasso diehards should also visit the house-museum where Picasso was born, the Fundación Museo Casa Natal de Picasso.

Málaga Contemporary Art Centre (CAC Málaga)

Housed in the former wholesale market building, the Mercado de Mayoristas de Málaga, the CAC Málaga is dedicated to the plastic arts, and visual arts as a whole, from the last three decades of the 20th century until the present.

Inaugurated in 2003, it contains works by such artists as Louise Bourgeois, the Chapman brothers, Gerard Richter, Paul McCarthy, Anish Kapoor, Jason Rhoades, Raymond Pettibon, Ron Mueck, Rachael Whiteread, Yoshitmo Nara, Roni Horn, Daniel Richter and Rodney Graham. Based on the model of the German Kunsthaus (house of art), it also offers complementary activities, including film cycles, courses and conferences.

Carmen Thyssen Museum, Málaga

This selection of works selected from the collection of Carmen Thyssen is housed in the historical Villalón Palace, built in the mid-16th century. With a total of around 230 works on display, this museum features Spanish artists mainly from the 19th and early-20th century, distributed in these categories: Old Masters, Romantic Landscape and Genre Painting, Précieux and Naturalist Painting, and Fin-de-Siècle.

Lastly, a curious detail – like the Picasso Museum of Málaga, the basement also features Roman ruins, which are open to the public.

Centre Pompidou, Málaga

Following in the footsteps of the Louvre, which already has a second branch in Lens (France), and another on the way outside France, in Abu Dhabi, the Centro Nacional de Arte y Cultura Georges Pompidou has just unveiled in Málaga its third branch, and first outside France. The museum is housed in El Cubo, a new building dating from 2013, noteworthy for its crowning device, from which it derives its name – a steel-and-glass cube which acts as a skylight.

On display in this space is a total of 80 paintings and photos by such artists as Francis Bacon, Georg Baselitz, Constantin Brâncuși, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Giorgio de Chirico, Max Ernst, Alberto Giacometti, Jean Hélion, Frida Kahlo, Fernand Léger, René Magritte, Joan Miró, Francis Picabia, Pablo Picasso, Antoni Tàpies, Jean Tinguely and Kees Van Dongen. From two to three temporary exhibitions will also be scheduled, as will a number of multidisciplinary activities.

Saint Petersburg State Russian Museum Collection, Málaga

In Málaga you can now enjoy a piece of Russia’s art production. To be inaugurated on 28 March, in the former Tabacalera (tobacco factory), it will feature works from the State Russian Museum of Saint Petersburg. This compendium of 500 years of Russian art history will range from icons of Byzantine inspiration to the social realism of the Soviet era.

The permanent exhibition of one hundred works will be augmented by two annual temporary exhibitions focusing on some of the leading figures in Russian art.

Book your flight now and get ready to take in all this beauty!

Text ISABELYLUIS Comunicación

Photos © Área de Turismo. Ayuntamiento de Málaga, Museo Carmen Thyssen Málaga, Museo Picasso Málaga (© David Heald), CAC Málaga

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