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The Museum of Modern Art

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Learn about Modern Art

Occupying an old tobacco factory on Avendia San Juan, the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires (MAMBA) is an awesome museum with a bright future ahead of it.

Modern Art Museum Buenos Aires

The museum moved to the Piccardo Cigarette Factory in 1986, but has spent the last five years closed for renovations. In late 2010, it partially re-opened to the public, with a couple rooms full of exhibitions. When fully completed, the MAMBA will have over 7000 works and be the largest modern art museum in Latin America. But if you get there early, no bother: even in its reduced state, the MAMBA is worth seeing, especially considering the entry price of $1.

We’re always skeptical of modern art, often finding it pretentious and boring. Upon seeing be-scarved dandies nodding thoughtfully in front of a red square on the wall, I’m known to fly into a violent rage. Thankfully, the works on display in the MAMBA aren’t like that. Though they had just a couple rooms to work with, the museums curators have done a great job of selecting works that are interesting and aesthetically appealing.

The building itself is definitely worth the one-peso entry fee. Inside, a lovely steel staircase dominates the foyer, and the red brick factory truly stands out in the otherwise quaint, historic streets of San Telmo. In the building’s facade, the number 43 is mysteriously repeated over and over again. A little googling revealed that “43” was the name of the cigarette brand produced in the factory.

MAMBA’s Official Website
350 San Juan Ave
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Mamba
43 Cigars
Rollercoaster Stairs
San Telmo Art
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February 24, 2011 at 7:33 pm Comment (1)

The Proa – La Boca’s Modern Art Museum

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Buenos Aires Street Art

For such a congested tourism hub, La Boca has a few wonderful places to escape the throngs. The surprisingly fun Wax Museum is one, and the excellent modern art museum Fundación Proa is another.

PROA

The Proa’s facade is that of a stately 19th-century Italian mansion, but the interior has been completely gutted and converted into a museum space, all clean walls and sharp angles. The contrast is startling, but works perfectly for the kind of art showcased by the foundation.

The Proa opened in 1996, and has three floors of temporary exhibitions. There is no permanent collection. The show we happened to see was called Of Bridges and Borders, featuring a number of works from international artists created specifically for the Proa, which focus on the real and imagined borders which separate us. Many of the pieces were fantastic, and we had a great time wandering around the spacious rooms.

On the top floor is a cafe with outdoor seating and a view over La Boca’s river promenade. We sat down with cold cans of Quilmes, and watched the masses below follow each other through the Caminito. The Proa, in comparison, was almost completely empty. Curious, how such a wonderful museum in a touristy zone like the Boca could be so completely overlooked.

Fundación PROA
Av. Pedro de Mendoza 1929
Tel: 11 4104 1000
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February 16, 2011 at 7:56 pm Comments (2)
The Museum of Modern Art
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