Friday 7 June 2013
We breakfasted in a local cafeteria and then walked across an iron footbridge that spanned the gorge to visit a museum of modern art on the other side. Alas, this had permanently closed, and so we re-traced our steps back to the main part of the old city where we visited the Museo de Arte Abstacto Español which was housed in one of the remarkable casas colgadas. This has a lot of art from the 1960s and 1970s, which Susie is particularly fond of. She went mad with the camera. The artworks were beautifully displayed, and the views out of the windows provided a constant distraction, as many offered interesting views of Cuenca’s dramatic topography and glimpses of the surrounding buildings.
Later in the day we visited the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo. This was also housed in an extraordinary building. Unfortunately, we did not have enough time to explore this gallery before it closed, and there was a great deal to see. The collection seemed to go on forever through a maze of rooms. The Centro is not as austere or as parsimonious as the Museo de Arte Abstracto; it is quirkier and somewhat cluttered, but this is easy to forgive because you are so frequently ambushed by a work that grabs and holds your attention. Alternatively, you are led down a staircase that ends in a room whose original function you can only guess at. In short, the building is just as quirky and intriguing as the collection. It would have required at least three hours to explore both of them properly. We had to make do with one hour.