Arts


The Museum of Fine Arts in Buenos Aires.  It has a collection that includes international pieces by artists like Rodin, Monet, Gauguin, and Degas, to name a few.  There was, perhaps more importantly to me, a wonderful collection of Argentine art, including:

Antonio Berni Lili (1943), Primeros Pasos (1936)

Benito Quinquela Martin Elevadores a pleno sol (1945)

Eduardo Sivori Primavera (1914)

Ernesto de la Carcova Sin pan y sin trabajo (1894)

Special exhibit: Martin Fierro, a literary magazine published from 1924-1927.  It was named after a poem by Jose Hernandez, about a gaucho outlaw.  It was not overtly political in tone, its motto being “art for art’s sake.”  It was contributed to by a number of Argentine writers, collectively referred to as the ‘Florida Group.’  Clearly, the museum, while housing an impressive international collection, is solidly focused on the history of creative production in Argentina.  And making this knowledge available to the public.  As it should be.

My conclusion:   A perfect, and perfectly gratis, afternoon would be a walk around Recoleta Cemetery before or after touring the museum.   Though it would be well worth it to spring for some gelato from Un Altra Volta, which is located at Santa Fe 1826, near the corner of Callao.

Location: Avenida Del Libertador 1473, close to Avenida Pueyrredon

Price:  free

Hours: Tuesday -Friday 12:30-8:30 PM, Saturday-Sunday 9:30-8:30 PM

Website: http://www.mnba.org.ar/

I loved it.  It was mostly work by artists that I didn’t know, and they were good.  The whole schema fit the goals of my trip so well: see Latin America, as it is, as a product of its past.  My breath caught at times, I was affected, and I highly recommend it.

My conclusion: Go.  Seriously.  Do not miss it.

Location: Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415

Price: 18 pesos (4.50 in gringo)

Hours: Thursday – Monday, 12-8 PM, Wednesdays 12-9 PM, closed Tuesdays

Website: http://www.malba.org.ar/

The Museo de Arte Decorativo was created in 1937.  It was designed by the French architect René Sergent in 1911, and completed in 1918.  It was the home of Josefina de Alvear and her husband Matias Errazuriz Ortúzar, both of whom were members of prominent families, hers from Argentina and his Chilean.  They were very involved in the interior decoration of the home, and it is very European, though there are also a number of Asian objects.  It all looked old, like it probably belonged in a palace at some point.  The effect, for me, all taken together, was stuffy and boring.  The house (read: mansion) itself is the best part about it, as you can probably guess, after looking at this pic.

I went on a Sunday afternoon.  There was almost no one there, except for one large group of tourists getting a guided tour.  In fact, there were more guards than either guests or rooms in the place.  The rooms were small, and there was a guard  in each one.  It did not inspire lingering.

My conclusion: If you like old crap, you might go.  It’s pretty cheap.

Location: Av.del Libertador 1902 (on the corner of Avenida del Libertador and Sanchez de Bustamante)

Price: 5 pesos (1.25 in gringo)

Hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 2-7 PM

Website: http://www.mnad.org.ar/