Visual Narrative #019 – Lanzarote I – César Manrique:


VN #019: Lanzarote I
Posted April 22, 2024


Lanzarote I – Arts, Culture & Tourism

César Manrique:

As described in Newsletter #209, César, a visionary artist, had a profound and long-lasting impact on Lanzarote art, architecture, landscape planning, and tourism.

The LagOmar Museum, also known as the Omar Sharif House, is an architectural masterpiece with Manrique influence. The house is built in an old volcanic rock quarry; formed around it’s natural caves, tunnels, and terraces.

As the story goes, Omar Sharif, while acting on a film produced in Lanzarote, fell in love with the island and the house. Two days after purchasing it, he bet his new home in a card game and lost. He never slept one night in the place he loved so much.

 This room in the Omar Sharif House has been carved out of the volcanic hillside. Water seeping down the left wall shows how this style of architecture harmonizes with nature; it was raining outside.
 Like most bird nests and animal homes, they are connected to outdoor elements.

he indoor and outdoor spaces of the house are connected by passage ways and tunnels.

A second outdoor pool is just outside the master bedroom; an indoor room carved within the hillside.

There are many indoor rooms and outdoor spaces with a multitude of functions. Where to have morning coffee, afternoon tea, cocktails, or evening party, would make decision-making a pleasure!

César Manrique and close friends Jose Ramirez and Jesus Soto, also had a huge influence on tourism development. Together they mapped out a sustainable future for Lanzarote tourism which would be sensitive to the landscape.

One such attraction is the Cueva de Los Verdes. A section of a 7km long lava tube comprised of tunnels, cave spaces, vaults and interior lagoons, has beautiful cave lighting and is open for tourists. The entire underground experience puts one in touch with primordial events.

This reflection is like none other. Only a few centimeters from my feet is what looks like the bottom of a 50-meter hole. I was cautious as I made this image for fear of falling in. In fact, the hole is a shallow pool of water reflecting the ceiling and side-walls. Because there is absolutely no air movement in this deep volcanic cavity, the reflection is 100% pure and absolute.


More Visual Narratives about various aspects of Lanzarote arts and culture are being posted during the next two weeks. Check them out, or subscribe.



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