Results 1-10of 26 Reviews
Birchircara, Malta Majjistral, Malta
January 14, 2013
From journal The heart of Spain throbs with song and dance
September 27, 2012
From journal Easter in Madrid
Northern Va Suburbs of DC, Virginia
October 15, 2011
From journal Madrid my 2nd favorite city in Europe (after London)
Moscow, Moskva, Russia
July 19, 2010
From journal Madrid and Its Surroundings
by Mandan Lynn
Smithwick, South Dakota
July 22, 2006
From journal Madrid!
February 5, 2006
From journal Holiday in Madrid
by Owen Lipsett
New York, New York
September 30, 2005
Simultaneously grandiose and austere, the Prado’s interior remains just as impressive as it must have been when it opened – and consequently you should set aside a full day for even the most cursory examination of the collection as a whole. Whether you have this amount of time or only a few hours, it’s wise to pick up a free map upon entering. Regardless of your particular interest, you shouldn’t miss Diego Velázquez’ "Las Meniñas" (Room 12) and Francisco de Goya’s "Disasters of War" (Room 39), the highlights of unrivalled collections of these two competitors for the title of Spain’s greatest painter.
The other greats of Spain’s rich pre-modern artistic history are amply represented as well, with entire galleries dominated by the works of El Greco (60A-62A), Zurbarán (17A-18A), Murillo, and Ribera, the latter two sharing Rooms 25-29. The eschatological paintings of the Hieronymous Bosch (a native of Spanish-ruled Flanders) are concentrated in Room 58 and sharply contrast with the Prado’s Spanish and Italian works, although his eccentric masterpiece "The Garden of Earthly Delights" (Room 58) would stand out anywhere! The Prado boasts several paintings by Raphael and the great Venetian triumvirate of Veronese, Titian, and Tintoretto but the greatest Italian work in the collection is Caravaggio’s "David Defeating Goliath" (Room 65).
I’ve provided these room numbers as the free map is rather basic and nearly all the labeling inside the galleries is in Spanish. I suspect these to be part of a concerted plan to convince foreign visitors to purchase painter-specific gallery guides from machines strategic placed in the Prado’s most visited galleries for €1 each. A rather more shameless fundraising ploy is the overpriced fare in the Prado’s mediocre cafeteria - El Botánico around the corner from the Murillo entrance at Calle Ruíz Alarcón 27 offers much tastier options!
Visiting the Prado requires some planning; it’s open 9am to 7pm Tuesday to Saturday, and 9 am to 2 pm on Sunday, but admission is free only on Sundays and after 2:30pm on Saturday, with the result that the museum tends to be most busy at these times. In addition, if you’d like to see the typically excellent temporary exhibitions (for which there is invariably a line) you have to enter by the northern Puerta de Goya, otherwise it’s better to use the far less busy southern Puerta de Murillo.
From journal Madrid: Spain's True Heart
August 22, 2005
You walk through more than 20 halls filled with centuries-old artwork.
We were very fortunate, as we went on a day that was free to the public. They normally charge about 6€.
From journal 8 Days in Madrid - Beautiful!
May 19, 2005
Especially useful for us as we began our tour of the Prado was the three-page description with five color illustrations of Hiernomymus Bosch’s "The Garden of Delights" that I’d read in the profusely illustrated art book I’ve mentioned in the Overview. This extraordinary Bosch painting was a hot spot, around which a crowd was gathered at all times during our 3-hour visit. This startling work is full of medieval symbolism, some of it contrary to contemporary symbolism. For example, the owl, to us a creature of wisdom, as it was to the classical Greeks and Romans, represented evil to medieval minds. My husband was taken by this extraordinary work, and I was able to explain to him what some of the images might represent in this work and in Bosch’s "Table of the Seven Deadly Sins."
Portraiture faded in importance with the advent of 20th-century art, but I feel that some of the Prado’s greatest paintings are in this genre. We didn’t see any of the Black paintings of Goya, as time limits made me focus on works I HAD to see, and I prefer Goya’s less dark, often satiric earlier paintings. As if on cue, my husband took a look at Goya’s "The Family of Charles IV" and asked, "These people. Who were they? They look stupid. " My husband knew nothing about Charles and his infamous wife, but Goya’s art so captured Charles’s bland looks in such contrast to the smug, chin-jutting countenance of his consort that he instantly grasped the insipid nature of this royal ménage.
Other superb portraits I admire include Anthony Van Dyck’s "Self-portrait with Sir Endymion Porter," Rubens’ "Maria de Medici," Antonio Moro’s piercingly poignant "Mary Tudor," and El Greco’s "Nobleman With a Hand on His Chest." Titian’s self-portrait shines among the entire Titian collection of the Prado, along with his superb Emperor Charles V at Muhlberg. Raphael’s "The Cardinal" is also a potent portraiture.
Of course, great museums demand more than a 3-hour visit. By focusing beforehand on what you really want to see, I find you enjoy less but the things you do see more fully. Next year, the Prado’s expansion will be complete, and the new Prado promises to be more exciting than the old one we saw. Truly, Madrid is an art lover’s dream come true - a city that wants to make its treasures accessible to all.
From journal Magnificent Museum Madrid
February 2, 2005
From journal Prado, Royal Palace and Other Stories