Artists

Seven inspiring Instagram accounts that unveil an alternative Madrid (Vol. II)

26 June 2019

Is Madrid your muse too? Here are seven unique artists and photographers that feel the same way…

SÍ ES PAÍS PARA VIEJOS

“Yes, it’s a Country for the Elderly” is a photo documentary project by Maria Cadavieco, which aims to increase the visibility of Spain’s oldest generation – those who lived through the dictatorship, knew life before mobile phones and retired before many of us were even born.

Through her candid photographs of Spain’s oldest generation going about their day to day lives, Maria encourages us to self-reflect, asking ourselves what we can learn from their attitude towards life.

PASADO EN PARALELO

Digital sorcery (a.k.a. Photoshop) has allowed artist Sebastian Maharg to fuse the most turbulent days of the past together with the relative peace of the present. His subject? Madrid during the Spanish Civil War.

I want people to realise that this happened right here – closer than we think. It’s easy to look at an old, black and white photograph and be fairly detached  or unphased by what’s in it. But, if that same photo is slotted into a context you walk by every day, then suddenly you’re a participant in that bit of history.

Follow him has his images from Pasado en Paralelo grow in number, but be warned: you’ll never be able to look at Madrid in the same way again.

BAR DE VIEJES

An Instagram account dedicated entirely to no-frills bars that look exactly like those you could find in Madrid, but, they’re not actually in Madrid – they’re in Buenos Aires. I’ve never visited Argentina but have a feeling that it looks exactly like Madrid did 50 years ago, and all the better for it.

The photographer behind Bar de Viejes has an impressive eye for Buenos Aires’ most nostalgic bars and cafes and their charming, fading features, all the meanwhile accidentally training us up to spot the best of them on the other side of the Atlantic over here, in Madrid.

AMIGOS DEL TOLDO VERDE

Friends of the Green Awning is actually a Facebook group, where amigos unite in their love for the least glamorous aspects of Spain, an appreciation of the sincere aesthetic of the castizos and the feeling of longing and nostalgia for the country. And, of course, a passion for green awnings – an ever-present and often-ignored iconic element that makes Spanish architecture special.

PUTO NIÑO

Puto Niño also goes by the name Javi, and has perfected the art of capturing the unexplained. Madrid is a city peppered with nonsensical objects and scenes that most of us have taught ourselves to ignore. But Javi, going against the grain, has developed an eye for these things. He then neatly files his quirky discoveries over here for us all to question how, and why?

MADRID BALCONY BOTTOMS

This brand-new Instagram account illuminates one arm of Andalusia’s galaxy, like a Milky Way of Islamic stars visible only when looking up. Just 17 posts in, Madrid Balcony Bottoms already has me obsessed and, just like any obsession, once you see one tiled balcony bottom, you’ll start seeing them everywhere.

MARGA SHOVA

And finally, a water-colourist with a passion for some of my favourite corners of Madrid

Continue on the trail of inspiration by exploring Volume I of Madrid’s best alternative Instagram accounts.

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