El Guernica: La gran obra del Museo Reina Sofía

By | 28 March, 2014 | 0 comments

Guernica Reina SofiaComparisons are never good but the visitor who enters the Louvre cannot miss out on admiring the La Gioconda, in the same way that he who enters the Reina Sofía Museum cannot miss out on looking at the  Guernica. Of stunning size for those who don’t know it beforehand (3.5 metres tall by 7.8 metres wide), Pablo Picasso’s masterpiece occupies a place of excellence in this museum, an old hospital in Madrid, and its mere contemplation generates silence among visitors.

Painted under feverish effects between May and June of 1937, just a few days after the cruel bombing of the Basque city of Guernica by the German Condor Legion, it was finished in time for the Paris International Exhibition of the same year. There it became a Spanish Republican symbol that resisted the fascist siege and that claimed international support to aid them with the conflict.

When the fascists won the war, its destination could obviously not be Spain so this work, considered as a 20th-century artistic icon, was protected in the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York from 1940. It spent four decades in the United States until it was transferred to the Casón del Buen Retiro in Madrid in 1981, where the crowd of the incipient Spanish democracy were able to admire the famous painting. From 1992 onwards, it moved somewhere more appropriate with the artistic avant-garde that it represents, the Reina Sofía Museum of Art, which was inaugurated that same year. There is where it stands proud, accompanied by a large number of drawings and photographs of the creation process that Picasso’s girlfriend Dora Maar took at the time.

A gem of contemporary art, due to its political significance and its plastic audacity, everybody who visits Madrid should go and see it because, like Goya did with his series of The Horrors of War, Picasso teaches us a lesson in his particular way about the madness of indiscriminate violence.

Our hotel is located in the heart of Madrid, it is a fantastic starting point for the route of the three great museums of Madrid. We are located just a few hundred yards from the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, next to the Prado Museum and also close to the Reina Sofía.

Foto: Adam Jones via Wikimedia Commons. Licencia CC 3.0 Unported.

Categories: Arte y cultura, Guías Madrid, tourism

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