by Mauricio Saenz
As I find myself attending graduate school at the Universidad Politecnica de Valencia in Spain, I have found myself with the urge of absorbing and looking at different expressions of art as much as I can. I think sharing this experience with TAOB will not only allow its readers to learn a little of how the art scene is like here in Valencia and Spain in general, but also to have a different perspective on how artists, museums, galleries, fine arts departments, professors, exhibits, and so on work and in this way compare it to the one we have in the valley, always with the objective of trying to improve the conditions that we possess and learning about new things that we lack. These chronicles will be based on the views of a person from the Rio Grande Valley / Norte de Tamaulipas who would like to see progress on the local scene and who is aware of its strengths and weaknesses, yet a person who is abroad to acquire a different perspective on producing art and looking at alternative expressions of it as a whole to expand his knowledge and who is eager to discover new paths in this world.
The first stop on my way to Valencia was Madrid, majestic and sophisticated Madrid. The Spanish capital possesses some of the best art museums in Europe and vast collections of art from the world's best known artists. No tour of art museums can't be started anywhere else other than in Museo del Prado, right along Paseo de la Castellana, Madrid's most famous avenue. With a statue of Diego Velazquez standing proud at its entrance, El Prado Museum houses some of Europe's most famous masterpieces, among them "Third of May" by Francisco Goya and "Las Meninas" by Velazquez. Unfortunately it's not allowed to take pictures inside but tried to take some outside. Gearing from academic, classical art to a more modern face of it Museo de Arte Reino Sofia stands as the most important museum for contemporary art in Spain. This venue holds Picasso's masterpiece "Guernica" among others by artists such Joan Miro. Aside from these artworks Museo Reina Sofia holds exhibits from international artists in a more contemporary context. The last venue I was able to attend the day before coming to Valencia was a cultural centre called "Caixa Forum" (sponsored by bank "La Caixa") where I saw an exhibit of the work of a person who changed the history of modern architecture in the world, Richard Rogers.
The first feeling I can tell you I experienced after being able to appreciate all these expressions of art was being in the first world, a place where your eyes are wandering everywhere in awe as they discover new and incredible things around you. That sense of having fulfilled your sight with so many wonders is something I want to experience more often. First tip to TAOB readers from an avid traveller and emerging artist: try to go out of the valley as much as you can and look at art that is being produced somewhere else, you can't imagine the inspiration and eye-opener this is. The excellent Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno in the next crónica.
Contact Maurcio :