Part 5: Madrid Day 3 - Museo Thyssen and Museo del Prado


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The Trip

By the 3rd day, we were starting to get on local time.  Make no mistake about it, jet lag is real.  The prior day we walked our feet to nubs, so the only rational thing to do today was to walk some more.  Quite a bit more.  We decided to get a museum pass and attempt to do 3 of the local museums.  Not a rational decision as it turns out.  We DID 2 but only saw some parts of both.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

We got a tourist map at a local information booth so we could see where we were relative to some close objectives.  Our hotel was just north of the Seville metro station on the Calle Vigrenes Peligros (street of the dangerous virgins!).

We were heading toward the Museo Thyssen and passed this old gate.  I love the old-world craftsmanship in this iron-work.

A bit farther down the street we passed a really ornate gate.

As we crossed the Gran Via we got a nice view up the street with intricate buildings on both sides of the street.

The Metropolis Building is quite the place with Corinthian columns and detailed statuary.

This statue was tucked into an alcove.  Note the fingers are broken off.  Because of the crown, I assume this was the queen.

Further down the street we came upon a state building; perhaps the Spanish National Bank.

Nice ornate iron-work.

This building was visible from our hotel the prior night.  This is the Palacio de Cibeles Centrocentro.  Interesting signage in that the local language is Spanish and I assume that none of the refugees speak English.  So, WTF?

In the center of the traffic circle at Fuente de Cibeles there were free-standing flowers.  So, I got a photo of the brightest flower in the bunch.

This is the Fuente de Cibeles, although from the back side.  There is no path for pedestrians to the fountain as it is in the center of the traffic circle.

Close to the Museo Thyssen there were large beds of flowers.

Every once in awhile, rarely, I get very lucky.  This young German gal came by and ..... such a delightful change from the FFA Americans I saw.

A monument to the defense against Napolean.

The Museo Thyssen is a very large building.  There was a cafeteria there as well and we ate there after viewing the works in the museo.

Interestingly, the Thyssen allowed photos of the works.  So, I did my best in the low light.  I did not note the specific of the works I selected for this page, but by definition they caught my eye as something novel and noteworthy.  The vast majority of the early works were religious in nature and that wore on me rapidly.  While I understand the basis for the paintings, there are only so many Christ paintings that one can view in a day.  As a consequence, I tended toward non-religious works.  This is a very life-like painting, clearly done by a true master.  A rather portly fellow however.

Despite the dour and severe countenance, this was clearly an important person.

While the features are not as well defined as other works, this was an exceptional painting.

Intricate detail of Venice.  Note the treatment of light and shadows.

Another stunningly detailed painting of Venice.

This work caught my eye as it depicts a New World scene in Labrador.  A very life-like rendition of an free-floating ice berg.

While not the most detailed rendition of the female form, this artist clearly conveyed realistic proportions.

Monet was very popular, but to me it was more like finger painting.

Now here is true art.  This is Glasgow, Scotland on a foggy evening.  The artist did an outstanding job of capturing the lighting and reflections off the wet streets.

Ah, art.  I was stunned that this was displayed as it looked more like graffiti from a college dorm room: spackle and magic marker on masonite.

Note the detail on the hands.

Now this was something:  the name of the work stuck in my head "The Happy Violinist with a Glass of Wine" by Honthhorst, 1590.  Critics call the features "unrefined" but compared to spackle on masonite, well....

We had lunch at the Thyssen and then headed down the street to the Museo Prado.  The Prado, as it turns out, did not allow photo.  That was just a well as we saw many hundreds of noteworthy paintings.  The interior lighting was poor and the crowds were heavy.  Above, you can see the entrance to the Prado.

I got one photo in the Prado in the entry area.  This intricate bronze statue was striking.

On the way back from the Prado we passed a number of areas with cafe seating outdoors.

We passed the Congresso de los Diputados and spotted this bronze statue.

We bit off more than we could chew.  We got a Arts Pass for 3 museums and managed to do part of only two.  Our feet were hurting after standing for 5 hours and the stunning thing is that we only saw about 1/2 of the Thyssen and MAYBE 1/4 of the Prado.  Wow.

Next up, a day trip via train to Segovia.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2017, all rights reserved.
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