Discover the rich spirit of Lanzarote art at the César Manrique Foundation. This institution houses the artworks, gardens and collections of César Manrique within his former villa. Learn about his life and delight in details in the intriguing living spaces around the house.
César Manrique was a modern artist and architect, born in Arrecife, who was hugely influential in the development of the island as a tourist destination. For much of his life, he lived just north of Arrecife in a self-designed villa.
The foundation was established in this house after Manrique's death in 1992. Its purpose is to enshrine the life of one of Lanzarote's great artists, raise money to develop art awareness and promote cultural activities around the island. Experience true artistic and architectural talent in this villa, spread out over two levels.
Explore the upper floor to see architecture that mirrors a traditional Lanzarote house, albeit with tasteful modern flair. Enjoy spaces decorated with Manrique's artworks, illuminated by sun filtering through French windows. The gallery also exhibits works from Manrique's personal collection, including original sketches by Pablo Picasso and Joan Miró.
Head downstairs to five rooms that are carved from volcanic rock. Murals and ornate architecture decorate the area, making these well-lit spaces interesting to explore. The central cave houses a recreational area with a swimming pool and dance floor.
Walk around garden arrangements that combine concrete, white walls and lush vegetation. This landscaping embodies one of Manrique's hallmarks, an intertwining of nature with architectural forms. Note the use of native species of plant and the seamless relationship between the house and its environment.
Admire the surroundings as you wander the grounds. The structure sits on the site of the 18th-century lava flows that covered vast areas of the Lanzarote countryside.
The César Manrique Foundation is a short drive north from Arrecife and provides free parking. It is open daily and charges admission.