Saturday, November 28, 2015

Cable Company Art versus the Prado

I thought a visit to the Prada was obligatory since I was in Madrid. I shuffled through galleries crowded with ancient art for about an hour until I couldn't stand it. How many old Greek statues can a person enjoy? really? 

I much preferred the art I found on the streets of Spain. In Granada, the walkways were sometimes made of smooth river rocks laid on their edges to give the walker a little foot massage. And they frequently created patterns of leaves, or flowers, or in one case, an islamic scimitar.

Even the cable company left a little humor behind, rather than just pave over their ditch. 

In Barcelona, the sidewalks used a Gaudi design found years after his death for contemporary pavers. The hexagons had portions of three designs that came together as sea creatures when laid correctly. What can you see in these two?

Art celebrated more art! The first, a flamenco dancer. The second, cellist Pablo Casals. 

The giraffe rests languidly on her side, hedonistically inviting you to enjoy her on a fine day in the plaza.

We saw some graffiti, the kind that scribbles a quick name or symbol on a foundation corner. We verified with the cab driver that it was "tagging" of territory for drug sales.

These wall sized "pieces" expand names with shape and color, to declare love, or express pride. ( I hope there aren't hidden evil messages that I missed. )

 This one is in a nice neighborhood, I wonder if it's just tolerated, or appreciated.

This lower one is at the edge of Parc Guell (pronounced "way")  Gaudi's planned residential community built on what was the edge of Barcelona. Now you can enter for free. But you must purchase tickets ahead of time to get in and see the homes.  It's caused some dissension, apparently.

All of the examples were delightful and inspiring in their own way. Better than the Prado, in my opinion.   

Next time you see public art in a downtown street, stop and tell the closest retailer how much you appreciate it. 

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