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The Andalusian city of Malaga, birthplace of Pablo Picasso, has always had a connection to art. In recent years that connection has grown even stronger and its art galleries now easily rival those found in cities such as Madrid and Barcelona. Here are some of our top picks for museums and art galleries in Malaga.
The Picasso Museum is one of the city’s more popular art museums. It is entirely dedicated, of course, to Picasso, one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, born in Malaga. During Picasso’s lifetime, the artist requested that some of his works be displayed in his native city, and so the Picasso Museum was established in the stunning 16th-century Palacio de Buenavista. The museum’s collection features 233 pieces of art spanning his career, including many of his ceramics.
Picasso’s Casa Natal (birthplace) museum, is also worth a visit if you’re a fan of the artist. It has been open to the public since 1988. As well as seeing where, and how, Picasso lived as a child, it displays around 3500 pieces of artwork by over 200 artists, including Picasso and his contemporaries. Many of the sketches, engravings, graphics and ceramics in the exhibits were donated by Picasso’s daughter-in-law and granddaughter.
📍Museo Casa Natal de Picasso, Plaza de la Merced 15, Málaga, Spain +34 951 92 60 60
Malaga’s contemporary art museum was opened in 2003 in the area known as ‘Soho de Malaga’ and is already well known for its importance. Its collection focuses on 20th – and 21st-century visual art and comprises a collection of around 400 pieces, which is constantly evolving. The collection features works by both Spanish and international artists such as Damien Hirst, Louise Bourgeois, Juan Muñoz and Miquel Barceló. The museum also showcases various changing exhibitions.
The Malaga Pompidou Center pop-up art gallery opened in 2015 and is a branch of the famous Center Georges Pompidou in Paris – the only one outside of France. Housed in a multi-colored glass cube, it displays around 80 works of art in various exhibitions throughout the year, and will do so for the next five years. Artists that have been shown here include Francis Bacon, Pablo Picasso and Frida Kahlo.
The Malaga branch of the St Petersburg State Russian Museum is another of the city’s newest museums, having opened in 2015. Housed in an old 1920s tobacco factory, it displays hundreds of pieces of art dating from the period between the 15th and 20th centuries, that were especially selected to be shown in Malaga. Split into nine themed areas, it features old Russian art, art of the 18th century, Romanticism in Russia, Realism, Realism with Russian topics, the movement of ‘World of Art’ and Neoprimitivism, the avant-garde, Socialist Realism and art in the Melting Era, which occurred after the death of Stalin.
The Museo Carmen Thyssen Malaga is linked to the famous Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid and is set in the 16th-century Palacio de Villalon. Its permanent collection features 230 paintings, 133 of which are specifically from Andalusia and have never been displayed in museums before. The artwork focuses on typical Andalusian culture such as flamenco, bullfighters, bullrings and traditional architecture. Artists who are featured here include Jose Gutierrez Solana, Genaro Perez Villaamil and Ramon Casas.
📍Museo Carmen Thyssen, Calle Compañía 10, Málaga, Spain +34 902 30 31 31