Where to See Art in Palma de Mallorca (Part 2)
The Royal Palace of Almudaina, originally designed as an Arab Alcázar, now serves as the official summer residence of the Spanish royal family. Remodeled in the Gothic style in the 14th century, this architectural masterpiece still retains some of its original Moorish features, including the black-and-white checkered wooden ceiling and elegant pointed arches that offer stunning sea views.
Inside the palace, visitors can admire an exquisite collection of tapestries, paintings and sculptures that impressively document the eventful history of the palace and the island of Mallorca. Each work of art tells a story of its own, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the island’s diverse culture and rich heritage.
An architectural masterpiece, the Catedral de Mallorca is a feast for the eyes, from its monumental size and breathtaking ribbed vaults to the total of 61 stained glass windows. The central rose window, depicting the Morning Star, dates to the 14th century and is nearly 38 feet in diameter.
Fans of Antoni Gaudí’s work will delight in the cathedral’s altar, decorated with abstract ceramic figures so typical of his style. At the center of the altar is a large canopy with suspended North African-style lanterns and intricate metalwork.
Perhaps the most fascinating part of the cathedral is the Chapel of the Holy Sacrament. It is the work of Miguel Barceló and is a rather unusual contemporary work, especially for a place of worship. The artwork that covers the walls of the chapel is full of biblical references and symbols, from the multiplication of the loaves and fishes to the turning of water into wine and the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus.
This stunning 18th-century Baroque-style building provides a unique setting for fascinating temporary exhibitions focusing on contemporary art and photography.
Located along Passeig Del Born, a dreamy, tree-lined promenade in central Palma, the house is one of the last mansions built on the island and has recently been restored to its former glory. It is also home to the annual “Ciudad de Palma” photography and painting awards.
Before visiting, find out about the opening times – it is closed on Mondays and during the lunch break from Tuesday to Saturday, and special opening hours apply on Sundays and public holidays.
Artist Studios and Galleries
It is said that Palma has more artists’ studios and galleries per capita than any other Spanish city. Most of them, including the studios, are open to the public, so take advantage of this unique feature of Palma’s art scene and go for a little stroll.
Head to Carrer de Sant Feliu, where across the street is Rialto Living, a lifestyle concept store with significant gallery space, and Kewenig Gallery, a former synagogue turned mosque before being converted into a church.
Rialto Living’s exhibition spaces can always be relied upon for outstanding contemporary art and photography by outstanding artists. Recent exhibitions include the “Prints” collection by Mallorcan native Joan Bennàssar and the moving abstract works by Estefanía Pomar Aloy.
Meanwhile, the Kewenig family has invited internationally known artists to the island to create artworks specific to Mallorca, its nature and its history, so the gallery offers a unique chance to admire art that cannot be seen anywhere else would.
La ‘Nit de l’Art’
If you want to travel to Palma specifically for its exceptional art scene, there’s no better time than the third Thursday in September. At this time, Palma’s most important art event, La ‘Nit de l’Art’, takes place. This event sees museums and galleries join forces with private residences, bars and historic buildings to create a paradise for art lovers in the city’s historic center – all in the spirit of a Spanish fiesta.
Venues will remain open all night and offer free entry. In the run-up to the event there is the opportunity to take part in various art discussions, workshops and openings.