Oh Baby Santa Cruz Is Hard To Ignore

Come on how many capital cities can you go to and be confronted by a huge babies head at the entrance of a public park. Take a bow Santa Cruz, this bronze sculpture Carmen Dormida (Carmen Sleeping) by Antonio Lopez and it is rather haunting and worrying in equal measures.

The sculpture at Parque Garcia Sanabria is on loan from the Boston Museum of Fine Arts until 30 May and if everyone who had their photo taken with it put a euro in a bucket the city would be rich in money but suffering a bucket drought. I couldn’t help wondering if there is another sculpture somewhere of a mother with a very pained cross eyed expression on her face.

I always pop into Parque Garcia Sanabria anyway as it is very beautiful and often contains some unusual activity. The floral clock is always another popular focal point but it is away for repairs at the moment, the replacement flower display was marking time in fine fashion. It wasn’t meant to be an artistic visit, just a bit of mooching around but all the statues and sculptures seemed to catch my eye. The lions on the General Serrador bridge over Barranco de Santos normally purr away in peace but I felt the need to snap them today.

There was a chilly wind blowing across Tenerife but the sun was out and away from the shade it was good, hardly any reason to wrap the trees up. Just behind the Plaza de España a recent art project saw local ladies crochet decorative sleeves for the saplings, this too was getting plenty of passing interest from the cruise liner passengers spilling into the city. The main harbour, or airport as our friends from Gran Canaria might call it, was fairly quiet today but the huge Mein Schiff liner made a colourful addition to the skyline.

There was a little sprinkling of rain at one point so I adjourned to a few central spots, the Parque Bulevar commercial centre has housed the Carnaval museum for the last two years but the costumes were nowhere to be seen and instead of wild Carnaval dance music it was The Communards song Small Town Boy entertaining the sparse trickling of shoppers. Further on past the Plaza del Patriotismo the balustrades of the Circulo de Amistad building made me cast my gaze upwards. Museums are great in Santa Cruz, I popped into the Museo de Bellas Artes (museum of fine arts), a strange mix of traditional and experimental.

The first floor had PSJM – A Cultural Decade 2003 to 2013, it was commercial images like cynical variations on corporate advertising and some video displays. The upper floor has several halls of Royal Academy portraits and huge religious scenes covering whole walls. These works are a permanent display, I recognized many of them from my last visit to the museum a few years ago. All good stuff and free entry, don’t go on a Monday as most of the big museums have that as their closed day. By now it was time to head back south but I will return soon and see what other surprises the city can offer me.