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José Luis before López Vázquez

Best known as an actor, José Luis López Vázquez was also a draughtsman, designer and art collector. This exhibition shows all his facets and includes works from his collection by Maruja Mallo, Dalí and Tàpies, among others.

Until 14th July 2024

Due to heritage intervention work, the center will have new hours until further notice, opening on Fridays and Saturdays from 12 noon to 8 p.m. and on Sundays from 12 noon to 6 pm. It will be closed from Monday to Thursday.


Free admission until full capacity is reached.


Reduced mobility

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The exhibition ‘José Luis before López Vázquez’ brings to a close the series of events to mark the centenary of the birth of the popular actor from Madrid. With almost a hundred pieces showcasing his work as a draughtsman and designer of costumes and sets etc., the exhibition also explores his career as an actor and his more personal side, presenting little-known aspects of his private life.

This exhibition also reveals one of his hidden passions: thanks to his success as an actor, he was able to become an enthusiastic art collector, acquiring works by contemporary artists linked to his theatrical origins.

The Serrería Belga (The Belgian Sawmill) presents together for the first time, twelve of the works he collected over the years, including Maruja Mallo’s The Surprise of the Wheat (La sorpresa del trigo), Salvador Dalí’s Head of Gala (Cabeza de Gala), Antoni Tàpies’ Jazz, Alberto Sánchez’s Bird Drinking Water (Pájaro bebiendo agua), Antonio Saura’s Ancestor 5, Fernando Zóbel’s Small Drawing for... (Pequeño esquema para...), Edgar Neville’s Quai de la Seine, a still life by Juan Manuel Díaz-Caneja, a sketch-logo for La Barraca by Benjamín Palencia, a drawing by José Caballero from 1936 and two drawings by Federico García Lorca from 1935. 

Curated by Félix Cábez, the exhibition José Luis before López Vázquez features works on loan from institutions such as the National Theatre Museum, the Filmoteca Española (Spanish Film Archive), the Museum of Contemporary Art Madrid (MAC), private collections and others.