Welcome to the golden age of ceramic art that took Madrid by storm, until the dictatorship and renovation works meant that all these beautiful old works of art were covered, sealed up and entombed for a future accidental renaissance which is happening right now.
It’s mid-morning by the time sunlight illuminates the grey facade of this no-frills gem in Estrecho, but the neighbours have been visiting Los Pepes since sunrise, just as they’ve done for years for their desayuno of churros and bracing café con leche, writes Juan Carlo.
Last Sunday, hundreds of market stall holders occupied the streets of the Rastro to defend their right to reopen their stalls and to preserve an ancient Madrid tradition. The same leafy street, lined with numbered buttons marking the location of each stall, was suddenly bustling again but with cries, chants and a live klezmer version of Bella Ciao.
Immigrant exploitation and even slavery is all around us. Immigrants pick our vegetables and keep them cheap. They take care of our elderly and give us free time. They clean our hospitals, deliver our food, build our homes and allow us to stay in them during the pandemic. Their institutional exploitation must stop, and that is exactly what Regularización Ya are here to do.
Here you have an ever-growing list of Madrid grass-roots groups campaigning locally for a better world. Whether you’re new to activism or have been campaigning passionately since you could first hold a banner, we hope this resource will be useful to you.
Remember when we were only allowed to stroll within one kilometre of our home, and when no bars, no restaurants and only a few shops were open? A beauty of being restricted to roaming nothing but the streets is that it led to one woman to documenting the open-air art gallery on her doorstep in the neighbourhood of Tetuán.
The Black Lives Matter movement has influenced the world and has taught us all how to use our voices to great effect. It’s taught non-marginalised groups not to step aside, but to step up to the challenge and fight for their neighbours. BLM has also taught those already fighting for change that the effort is worth it and to keep on fighting.
One hot summer night in 2015, protestors gathered outside Congress, quietly sitting cross-legged on the pavement with blue gags tied around their mouths and with their hands behind their backs. Their timing was key, protesting until the clock struck midnight on Wednesday 1 July – the moment their actions would suddenly become unlawful.
In early March, just two weeks before lockdown began, photojournalism student Tamar Shemesh took a trip to El Alamín, a tiny ghost town 70 kilometres west of Madrid. In this reportage, she tells us what she found and what she learned – all aided by hauntingly beautiful photographs – and how it reminded her of Israel, her home.
Becha opened up her Lavapiés tailor shop two years ago with a big ambition: to get Spanish people wearing African clothes. But what she never anticipated was that her workshop would become a small hub for African migrants and, further still: a food bank for the local community.