Cesar Manrique Fundation
Lanzarote’s first son, the incredible artist César Manrique had a remarkable life, much of which was dedicated to transforming his beloved island into one big work of art. He is responsible for so much exciting and innovative architecture throughout the Canaries and is hailed as a hero by many for the rich and adventurous dreams he made into a reality during his life and work on this beautiful volcanic land.
On his return from New York in 1968, César Manrique began working on this very singular house in the middle of a lava flow, cold and black, a legacy of the eruptions of 1730 and 1736. The artist lived here up until 1988. Today, the building houses the headquarters dedicated to conserving, studying and spreading the famous artist’s work. This foundation also promotes culture, art and the environment through exhibitions, conferences and publications.
The César Manrique Foundation is located just outside the cosy village of Tahíche in the municipality of Teguise, in the house known as Taro de Tahiche. At a roundabout marked by a silver coloured wind chime sculpture, a small street leads you to the Fundación César Manrique, founded in 1982 by the great artist and a circle of friends, with the objective of promoting architecture that is in harmony with the natural environment.
This building, constructed on five volcanic bubbles, since converted into rooms, is an example of the artist’s own style of architecture. Here is where the visitor can best understand how Lanzarote was transformed, mixing art with nature while at the same time respecting the landscape and the traditions of the island.
The first stop in the museum has on display the contemporary art collection of the FCM. It is possible to observe the pictorial works of Pedro González, Chirino or Gerardo Delgado and the engravings of friends of Manrique and luminaries of Spanish art like Picasso, Tàpies, Joan Miró o Chillida. After seeing the samples of contemporary art owned by the Foundation we go on to the rooms of buildings and sketches, where some of Manrique’s older works involved in public spaces are on display.
The art museum is momentarily interrupted with the descent to the lower floor, to the natural volcanic bubbles, of what was Manrique’s residence. The visitor will be able to enjoy a living example of what is considered nature-art with the rooms created by the Lanzarote artist by taking advantage of the natural structure of the lava and its continuation in the jameo-pool [collapsed lava tunnel made into a swimming pool] in one of the gardens of the building.
Manrique’s most outstanding pictorial works (Manrique Collection) constitutes the last stop at the permanent museum of the FCM. The strong colors he used, giving nature shapes to his oil paintings, is the most attractive aspect of his work. Having concluded the visit, you can walk around the ample gardens of Taro de Tahíche, where you will be able to see the large mural that the Lanzarote artist built with volcanic stone and tiles in a drawing for the opening of the César Manrique Foundation in 1992.
The conversion of the house into museum was supervised by Manrique himself just a few months before his death. It can be visited every day of the week until 6pm.
The foundation does important work in the field of plastic arts, the environment and culture. Its most important objectives include the conservation, research and promotion of the work of Manrique, as well as the promotion of environmentally-friendly artistic activity.
- From Monday to Sunday
- Public holidays
- From 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
- General: €8
- Children: Admission free