Lines with art: Line 2, a mix of styles and even an underground archaeological museum
Sound good? Well, that's not all: on the Metro network you can enjoy interesting artistic proposals, it’s like a great museum that’s home to all sorts of different styles.
On our "Lines with art” series today, we’re taking you to Line 2, where you’ll find everything from work by one of the key abstract artists in our country to an exhibition of century-old advertising. Ready to check it out?
We begin our tour at the Alsacia station, which has become a canvas. Here the mural Sueños encerrados, covers most of the walls, reaching up high. It is the work of Luis Gordillo, one of the leading figures in Spanish art, and is based on very high quality digital prints.
At this station, Esther García Ocaña pays tribute to women, with two murals. In one of them, entitled "Renaissance", she pays tribute to their as a source of life and renewal, tracing the history of art from Egypt 2,500 years ago to the present day. This visual journey concludes with two works by Josep Coll Bardolet which are dedicated to Mallorcan women.
In the second mural, which is no less than 36 metres wide, the artist reproduces 62 works by great masters of universal art where women are the protagonists. It is made of enamelled ceramic panels and also includes the names of famous painters and selected phrases from poets and philosophers that invite passengers to reflect.
In keeping with the surroundings, the decoration of the station that provides access to the Las Ventas bullring is inspired by the world of bullfighting. Thus, the foyer houses a mural by José Luis Fernández in ochre and gold tones representing the silhouettes of a bull, a bullfighter and a horse in a bullring, as well as a cape, fans, picadores and a burladero.
We now continue with the Manuel Becerra station, where you’ll find a 1979 mural by Alfaraz in glazed ceramic reproducing fragments of a historic building in the lobby.
And from there it’s on to the Goya station, where of course the decoration is dedicated to the genius from Aragon.
Eighty engravings and etchings are on display on Line 4, reproducing part of his pictorial work. For example, there are some prints from Los Caprichos one of his best known series of prints, in which he satirises the vices of the society of his time, abuses of power, and institutions such as the Inquisition.
In addition, there are reproductions of works such as Self-Portrait in the Studio, The Grape Harvest or Autumn and The Meadow of San Isidro on display on the platforms of Line 2.
At the station that provides access to the Retiro Park there are two murals by Antonio Mingote, in which he recreated various typical scenes from this area, and immortalised some of the most characteristic places in the park, such as the Retiro Park Bandstand and the lake.
During the modernisation work at this station that was completed in 2019, the remains of an old ceramic advertising mural were discovered, which has been restored and now forms part of the station’s decoration. It is made of white tiles and depicts a woman dressed in 1920s clothes who encourages passengers to use ‘salt soap from Carabaña’.
In addition, the new lobby, reopened to the public during the Metro de Madrid Centenary celebrations, is decorated with large-scale reproductions of old maps of Madrid and historic photographs of the exterior of the station.
At the 'Kilometre Zero' station there are two sculptures, one is dedicated to the three founding engineers of Metro de Madrid (Miguel Otamendi, Antonio González Echarte and Carlos Mendoza), and the other represents the stars that symbolise the Community of Madrid.
At the Ópera station there is a mural by Esther García Ocampo that pays homage to music through the image of several musical instruments, including a violin, a horn and a tambourine, protected by a large score.
Moreover, this station hosts the largest underground archaeological museum in Madrid, a 200 square metre space where you can see archaeological remains from the 16th and 17th centuries from the Fuente de los Caños del Peral, the Aqueduct of Amaniel and the Alcantarilla del Arenal.
The Santo Domingo station houses a mural by artist Wanda Cortorreal, which depicts the music, beaches, flora and fauna of the Dominican Republic. The work is in acrylic paint, and was installed to coincide with the celebration of the 2022 International Tourism Fair (Fitur), in which the Dominican Republic participated as a partner country.
Our journey on Line 2 comes to an end at the Cuatro Caminos station, where you'll find a cement mural in black tones that represents the face of a bull, and other more recent works.
After the recent remodelling of the station, two other very different works have been added, both created by DNA Estudio. One of them is a panoramic montage of views of Bravo Murillo, which explains the urban evolution of this area, and the other is an illustration of a train that represents a journey through time through the history of the Metro, from its inauguration in 1919 to the present day.
Also, if you go outside you'll find a replica of the totem designed by Antonio Palacios a century ago that marks access to the stations.
Did you like it? If you want to know more, take a look at our cultural guide, where you can discover some of the most interesting art in the Metro de Madrid.
Or maybe you’d prefer to listen? We tell you all about it in our 'Arte en Metro’ podcast, which is available on YouTube, Spotify and Ivoox.
And if we have sparked your curiosity and you want to know more about Metro, we encourage you to take a look at our podcasts section. You have them all here!