We didn’t know much about the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza before we got to Madrid. We had no idea it is a private collection that was sold to Spain. It’s quite a huge breadth of material, from very early medieval work like this famous Hans Holbein, the younger’s portrait of Henry VIII from 1543 to very modern work. The beginning of the museum where there are many rooms of medieval work can make your eyes go buggy unless that is your thing, so we hurried through some of that.
We always play a game in art museums we call, “What I Would Take Home.” My selection was the Degas pastel, “Race Horses in a Landscape,” from 1894.
Bill had a hard time as there were so many interesting artworks from which to choose. The Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza is known as the museum which houses great paintings by lesser artists and lesser paintings by great artists. We found this to be true as the Van Goghs and Monet were clearly not their best, but still very, very interesting to see. These were, perhaps, experiments and you can still see the genius in such works, maybe more so because you haven’t seen images of these many times.
I was thrilled to see a few Georgia O’Keefe’s I’d never seen before. I also got to see paintings by Magritte, de Kooning, Pollack, Mondrian, Hopper and the first time I’d ever seen a Clyfford Still.
The Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza is definitely worth a visit!
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