All over the Axarquía region, the hills are alive with colourful wildflowers – purple lavender, pink Convulvulus, red poppies and so many more!
Just look at these wild sweet peas :)
Málaga is leading the way with a new concept dubbed the “Pop-up Pompidou”, where the general public is offered a selection of around 90 masterpieces from the famous Centre Pompidou’s collection.
Becoming the first outside of France, the Centre Pompidou, Málaga will initially be a city feature for five years, but with an option to extend for a further five years.
The museum also features a programme of exhibitions and workshops aimed at families and younger audiences, making today’s art accessible to the widest possible audience.
We’ve become used to seeing the steel and glass cube (El Cubo) at one end of Muelle Uno (Quay 1), Málaga’s new port and shopping area. What was unclear until now, was that this cube was really a skylight, casting it’s sunlit magic into what has now become the cavernous museum below.
Sporting a new look, El Cubo has itself become a piece of art, adorned with coloured panels by artist Daniel Buren, entitled “Incubé”.
I was fortunate to be one of the first people to visit the new Centre Pompidou, Málaga during it’s opening weekend, at the end of March 2015.
After entering the Centre Pompidou, the stairs lead you down to the surprisingly large exhibition space inside, where you are taken on a journey through “The Collection”, featuring art of the 20th and 21st centuries.
The works on “human representation” are divided into five galleries, some larger and some smaller, exploring such themes as “Metamophoses”, “Self-Portraits”, “The Man without a Face”, “The Political Body” and “The Body in Pieces”.
Within each gallery the art is represented in the form of sculptures, paintings, installations, films and videos.
Displayed on the walls through the museum are works by Pablo Picasso, Frida Kahlo, Georg Baselitz, Joan Miró, Francis Bacon, Antoni Tàpies, Max Ernst, Marc Chagall, Constantin Brancusi and many others.
Without a doubt, my favourite piece was within the “The Body in Pieces” gallery, by Algerian artist, Kader Attia. “Ghost” is an installation of more than 140 hollow figures, kneeling in straight rows and all facing in the same direction. Each empty figure is made entirely of aluminum foil and alludes to be an anonymous Middle Eastern woman, covered from head to toe by her chador, bowed in prayer.
These fragile forms convey a powerful statement.
The installation could be described as vaguely sinister, yet I felt myself both respecting the figures’ privacy of worship, as well as being curiously drawn to inspect the hollow shells further.
I was able to seize the opportunity to become part of two of the interactive exhibits – the first, unknowingly, as I queued with the crowd outside the entrance to the museum, where the moving image is displayed on a wall inside, as a piece of art.
Later, in “The Man Without A Face” gallery I was encouraged to become an “anonymous witness” by hiding behind a white mask to observe how other visitors react to the artworks (and to me hiding behind the mask!)
Two or three temporary exhibitions are scheduled each year at the Centre Pompidou, Málaga. There is a cafe, auditorium and children’s inter-active play area.
Leaflets are available at the entrance (in several languages, including Spanish and English) suggesting various self-guided routes through the exhibits, depending on the amount of time you have available.
16th June to 15th September: 11.00am to 10.00pm
16th September to 15th June: 9.30am to 8.00pm
Closed on Tuesdays, January 1st and December 25th.
Permanent collection: €7, concessions €4
Temporary exhibition: €4, concessions €2.50
Permanent collection + temporary exhibition: €9, concessions €5.50
MY INSIDER TIP: FREE ENTRY after 4pm every Sunday
It’s an exciting time to be in Málaga.
To add to the heavenly scent of the orange blossom (also known as “azahar”), this weekend sees the beginning of Holy Week – with incense wafting into the heady mix.
Semana Santa features seven days of religious passion and spectacle – not only in Málaga city, of course, but in every town and small village throughout Andalucía.
Plus, one of Málaga’s famous sons returns each year to take part –YES, ladies, Antonio Banderas is in town!
Málaga already has a well established art scene with its Picasso museum, Contemporary Art Centre and Baroness Carmen Thyssen museum, but this week has seen the city’s credentials as an Art Hub extending further, with the opening of the Russian State Art Museum from St. Petersburg.
The Russian museum is housed in the beautifully restored Tobacco factory (Tabacalera) to the west of the city centre, near to the already popular Automobile Museum.
And today, Málaga extends it’s cultural connections still further, with the opening of the Málaga branch of the Pompidou Centre – the first outside of France.
Dubbed the Pop-Up Pompidou, the museum is housed underneath El Cubo, a huge glass cube in Muelle Uno – the city’s fabulous port area.
We’ve had a lot of cloud and rain during the past week. Fortunately, Mr. Sunshine is never too far away, so this morning when he popped through the clouds, I hot-footed it down to Torre del Mar for a walk along the promenade.
There is a lovely paved promenade at Torre del Mar, with beautiful gardens running alongside, and I’d only been walking for a few minutes when I came across this stunning flower on a banana plant.
Isn’t it magnificent?
A little further on, as I approached the Sailing Club, I moved from the paved promenade onto the hard, compacted sandy path on the beach, for a better view of the many boats stored at the club.
(You can see the clouds still threatening, over the mountains in the distance and indeed, as I write this, the rain has returned).
Known as the Sendero Litoral, this sandy path runs from the Rio Vélez delta to the port at Caleta de Vélez – a distance of 3.4 kilometres, and is popular with walkers and joggers.
It’s the same the world over!
Finding a parking space is getting more and more difficult, no matter where you live. You might have thought it would be an easy matter to park your car in any one of the pretty white villages in the Axarquía but, in some of them, it’s almost impossible.
The difficulty seems to arise because there is no time restriction. Once you’ve parked your vehicle, you can stay as long as you like – which is all very well when you can actually find a space in the first place!
Two years ago, to try to alleviate this problem, the town hall in Torrox introduced Blue Parking Zones (Zona Azul) around the centre of the village. This means that during certain times of the day, if you park where there are blue lines painted on the ground, you need to display a parking disc with the time correctly set to coincide with your arrival time.
The reusable parking discs can be purchased from most of the shops in the village for a one-off payment of €1. Once you have your disc, each time you park in the Blue Zone during ‘working hours’ (Monday to Friday, 9am – 2pm & 5pm – 8pm) you need to set the time on your disc to your time of arrival and the gap on the disc will indicate when you need to leave. You must display your disc, clearly visible, on the dashboard of your vehicle.
Within Torrox village, you are restricted to ONE hour of free parking. Outside of these times, including weekends, there is no restriction. This means that if you arrive at 1.30pm on any weekday afternoon, you can safely park until 5.30pm without a problem.
Of course, if you overstay your allotted time, or fail to display a disc, you will be faced with a hefty financial penalty.
All pretty straightforward you might think.
The Blue Parking restrictions were extended to certain areas of the coastal area of Torrox Costa, last summer. On the coast, parking is restricted Monday to Friday, 10am – 10pm and on Saturdays between 10am and 2pm. The scheme apparently works the same way as in the village, with the difference being that on the coast you are entitled to park for TWO hours free, instead of one.
This means, I presume, that you will need to purchase a different parking disc for €1 from a shop in Torrox Costa, as the gap indicating your allotted parking time (two hours) on the disc would be different from the one you can use in Torrox village (one hour).
With me so far?
What is confusing (to me, at least) is the extra part at the bottom of the sign that indicates that during July and August the maximum time for parking is two hours. Does this mean outside of the restricted hours, too? Or that you are only allowed to park once (for two hours) and then you have to clear off?
Confused? I know I am!
Of course, there have been some disgruntled drivers who object to the timed parking restrictions but, from a personal point of view I think the Blue Zone parking scheme works very well within Torrox village, as I really appreciate being able to always find a parking space since the system was introduced. However, the scheme down on the coast at Torrox Costa is pretty confusing.