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Madrid: Geomining Museum, the Very Best Kept Secret
Hard Facts about the Museum
Created by Royal Decree of Queen Isabel II in July 12 1849, the Geomining Museum houses an exhibition of 3,500 minerals and 6,000 fossils. Its main purpose is to conserve and spread the diversity and wealth of the paleontological, geologic and mineral patrimony from the Spanish regions and its old colonial territory. It is part of the Geologic and Mining Institute of Spain and besides the permanent and temporary exhibitions, it conducts environment education to students.
The construction of the building that presently hosts the museum started on 1921, directed by architect Francisco Javier de Luque. It went through several constructions stages, interrupted by the war, and lack of funds in the post war, until it finally completed in the 40s decade. The museum in its current state, after a cleanup and renovation project, reopened to the public in March 2 1989.
Minerals, Fossils and Me?
Having explained what this museum is about, I will confess this: I care not much about minerals or fossils. Shame on me, oh shame! Maybe that’s why it took me roughly 20 years of living in this city to find out about the Geomining Museum. When I did, I couldn’t believe I’ve toured the world over to find and visit beautiful buildings, all the while missing out on the most splendid architectural experience here in the heart of Madrid.
Maybe someone who enjoys fossils and paleontology and minerals could go on and on about the wonders contained in this museum. In a word, that’s not me. I, however, care aplenty about the eye candy offered by this spectacular space. Hence, here’s a gallery of images to prove my case.
I debated between using my personal collection of photographs instead of the fabulous gallery of images offered by the museum’s website. In the end, ascetics won and I’m borrowing the images, most of them of extraordinary quality, from the source.
Credit for all images goes to www.igme.es.
Lobby and staircases
Galleries and exhibition room
Exhibition room 1926, 1943, 2000
Go on, now, go
The museum is open from 9am to 2pm every day except Sunday, and listen to this, access is free. Do the Prado, do the Reina Sofia, by all means do all the known sights, but I encourage you to also visit this space and be amazed.
© 2009 Elena.