In his centenary year, we have wanted to do this small route in Arrecife in memory of César Manrique to express our gratitude for his work, as he saw in Lanzarote not only stones and volcanoes. Without him, things would be very different.
Most of us know his main works, but we are sure that some of you did not know that in Arrecife there are some works of the artist which have become part of the city. So, from here we invite you to participate in this Manrique Route in Arrecife.
Art in the city
The path begins in a castle known as San José Castle, which is today an International Museum of Contemporary Art. Manrique collaborated on its refurbishment (1976), and even worked as a cultural adviser at the museum. The gardens of the castle show us something that we can see in some of his works, the presence of volcanic stones and callaos (small and round stones due to the erosion) as a decorative element.
The next stop will be in the gardens of the Hospital Insular, where César Manrique built and sculpture in honor of the doctor José Molina Orosa in 1968.
Arrecife, source of inspiration
From here we go to the centre of the island, but before this we stop in the Charco de San Ginés. This place does not have any work of the artist, however it was here where he found his inspiration every day watching ship’s carpenters and hojalateros. That is why we must not overlook this place so special in the capital of Lanzarote. In 1984, he started with the refurbishment and remodeling of this area.
Through the narrow streets of the old Arrecife we arrive to Las Palmas Square, designed by César at the beginning of the 50’s, when he was still living away from the island. Not far from here we find another of his works, the gardens of the Ramírez Cerdá Park (1960), where volcanic stones and callaos are the main attractions, and a small fountain dominates this area of the park.
Now we walk to the cultural space “The Multidimensional Centre El Almacén”, as was known in 1984. This place belonged to the artist for some years and different works of César and other artists of that period were exhibited. Some years later he sold this Centre to the Council of the island.
We finish our route looking at the Barlovento sculpture in the centre of a roundabout, just at the entrance of the Islas Canarias Park. This spot was designed by the artist, and has been recently remodeled. This sculpture is a tribute to the sailor, and is known as “La Chatarra”. It was made with waste of iron boats in 1970. From that year this monument was situated in the Islas Canarias Park, but in 2003 it was moved away due to the refurbishment of the park. Some years later, it came back to this area in the avenue of the capital.
As you can see, Arrecife offers us magical spots with the soul of César Manrique. Did you know these places? Did you recognise all these works were made by the artist?
- Fundación César Manrique
- Ocio Lanzarote