Madrid and Culture galore

Whilst Niall was over with us in September we went for a three day visit to Madrid which coincided with our 27th wedding anniversary. Madrid was wonderful, we stayed in a lovely airbnb right next door to the Reina Sofia art gallery in the bohemian art district of Madrid.

The Trip to Madrid was by train from Guadix – €25 first class return each, reserved seats and two movies on a four hour journey. The equivalent of Edinburgh to London – wonder how much that would cost?

On the first day we visited the Reina Sofia is a contemporary art gallery containing many works by modern artists from Spain and around the world. Perhaps its most famous painting is Picasso’s Guernica a massive mural painted by Picasso in the 1930’s to show the atrocities modern warfare inflicts on innocent civillians. This was a picture that all of us (Niall, Suzi and myself) had long wanted to see, and the emotional impact on us was beyond words. It was more apt now as my brother – Marcel Craven, was undertaking a collaborative piece for Hull’s city of culture twining St. Mary’s church in Hull with Santa Maria, the church in the town of Gurnika (the Basque town in northern Spain bombed by Nazi Germany in support of Franco during the Spanish Civil War) – both locations having extensive bombings and loss of civilian life.

After our thought provoking afternoon Suzi and I went to a Flamenco night bought for us by Niall Craven, whilst he went to watch Real Madrid. This was a truly amazing, intimate show to which we had front row seats. Truly amazing music and dancing!

The next day we went to the Museo del Prado an art gallery that holds one of the greatest collections of art in the world, including works by Rubens, Bosch, Velázques an Goya. Again there were many works that the three of us wished to see and we spent the whole day there. Amongst my favourites were:-

  1.  Bosch – The Garden of Earthy Delights
  2.  Goya – ‘The Black Paintings‘, especially Saturn Devouring his son‘ and ‘The Dog
  3. Velázques – Dwarfs and Buffoons

We then went site seeing/shopping and saw the Spanish equivalent of Buckingham Palace – The Royal Palace of Madrid.

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