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We have made a break to sit and think how we are going to make the plans for the coming weeks ahead in South America. We are going to visit the museums of few more countries: Argentina, Chile, Peru and Ecuador. Once we will finish our roundtrip we will move to Hawaii to do some surfing, but we have not decided it yet. In this new country for us, Uruguay, we do not have any previous references to do our museum’s visit, we still alone, by ourselves. We are just to be like this so it is not going to be a big problem to us at all. The trip made from Asuncion (Paraguay) to Montevideo is about 1.100 miles by car. The gasoline is not really expensive so we rather to drive all the way down to enjoy different landscapes. So, we are not going to keep talking, let’s go to our museum visit in Uruguay…

Museo de la Revolución Industrial / Fray Bentos

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Fray Bentos has an Industrial Revolution Museum in the former meat processing factory of the Liebig Extract of Meat Company where thousands of people worked. When it was shut down the opportunity for the creation of a unique museum was taken, where the original machinery and social and cultural artefacts of the technological revolution in Fray Bentos can be shown to the world. The museum shows, for tourism and educational purposes, the machinery used in the meat and extract of meat process, the buildings, an 1893 Merryweather water pumping machine, a complete canning plant, a plant where the meat was cooked, a laboratory etc.

Museo El Cabildo / Montevideo

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The Montevideo Cabildo (Spanish language: Cabildo de Montevideo) is the public building in Montevideo that was used as the government house during the colonial times of the Viceroyalty of the River Plate. Today the building is used as a museum and houses the Historical Archive of the city. It is located on Constitution Square, in Ciudad Vieja.

Museo del Gaucho y de la Moneda (no website) / Montevideo

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Housed in the ornate Palacio Heber, this museum displays a superb collection of historical gaucho artifacts, including horse gear, silver work, and mates and bombillas (metal straws with filters, used for drinking mate; a bitter ritual tea) in whimsical designs.

Museo del Hombre y la Tecnología (no website) / Salto

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On the corner of Brazil St. and Zorrilla St. of San Martín stands the Museo del Hombre y la Tecnología (Museum of Man and Technology). Located in a building built between 1909 and 1915 that once housed the Central Market of Salto, it currently has eleven rooms and a central area that shows how the different events in the evolution of technology have changed the life of man. Modern, chronological and educational, as you walk through the collection of the museum archeological findings there are 2,000-year-old exhibits when Salto Grande Dam was excavated.
 
Museo de Bellas Artes Juan Manel Blanes (no website) / Montevideo
 
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The Juan Manuel Blanes Municipal Museum of the Arts is located at Avenida Millan 4015, in the neighbourhood of Prado, Montevideo, in a Palladian villa designated a National Heritage Site in 1975. The villa was originally designed in 1870 by Juan Alberto Capurro, an engineer trained at the Turin Polytechnic, for the then-owner Dr. Juan Battista Raffo. The surrounding garden reveals elements of French landscape design. The municipality acquired the villa in 1929, when it commissioned the architect Eugenio Baroffio to renovate and expand the building. Baroffio maintained the eclecticism of the original design, leaving the facade intact. The museum was founded in 1930, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the first Constitution of Uruguay, and named after the patriotic Uruguayan artist, Juan Manuel Blanes.

Museo del Mar de Uruguay / Punta del Este

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Located at La Barra de Maldonado, this museum offers to its visitors a collection with more than 10.000 species from the acuatic fauna of all over the world. There can be found shells, corals, sea horses, sea stars, crabs, whales skeletons, turtle shells, shark jaws, and much more. There can be found a large picture collection from Punta del Este and a huge aquarium. The Museo del Mar is part of a private collection that began in 1961 and today has pieces from all over the world. Its construction began in 1993 and opened its doors for the first time the 15st of January 1996. Since then the museum has tripled its size and consequently the collection´s variety.

Museo Casa Quinta Doctor Luis Alberto Herrera / Montevideo

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Museo de la Casa de Luis Alberto de Herrera (translation: House Museum of Luis Alberto de Herrera) is a museum in the Brazo Oriental barrio of Montevideo, Uruguay. The street in which the house is situated, somewhat set back from the road, is now known as Avenida Dr. Luis Alberto de Herrera (previously Avenida Larrañaga). It is surrounded by a park designed by landscape architect Charles Racine. The building was constructed at the end of the 19th century and was the residence, among other distinguisted persons, of the National Party leader Luis Alberto de Herrera, who was active in Uruguayan politics for most of the 20th century until his death in 1959. It has been annexed to the National Historical Museum in 1966.

Museo Torres García / Antigua Ciudad de Montevideo

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The Museo Torres García is located in the historic Ciudad Vieja (Old Town) of Montevideo where unusual portraits of historical icons and cubist paintings akin to Picasso’s paintings, painted by Joaquín Torres García are exhibited. The museum was established by Manolita Piña Torres, the widow of Torres Garcia after his death in 1949 who also set up the García Torres Foundation, a private non-profit organization which organizes the paintings, drawings, original writings, archives, objects and furniture designed by the painter as well as the photographs, magazines and publications related to him. The museum attracts over 85,000 visitors a year, not only for its exhibits but also because it functions as a temporary library (on the ground floor) and as a theatre (in the basement) and attracts a significant number of art students, school children, and tourists with guided tours and educational workshops. The museum has seven floors, with the first three floors used as exhibition space and the upper floors for educational activities and art workshops.

Museo Nacional de Artes Visuales / Montevideo

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National Museum of Visual Arts (Uruguay) (Spanish: Museo Nacional de Artes Visuales) a museum in Parque Rodó, Montevideo, Uruguay. It was inaugurated on December 10, 1911. This museum has the largest collection of Uruguayan artists artwork. Among them are works of Rafael Barradas, Joaquín Torres García, José Cúneo, Carlos Federico Sáez, Pedro Figari, Juan Manuel Blanes and the artist Pablo Serrano who lived in Montevideo for twenty years. The museum hosts also temporary exhibitions, in many cases of foreign artists, whose artwork travels in different museums around the world.

Museo Memorial Tragedia de los Andes (no website) / Montevideo

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Andes Tragedy and Miracle (1972) Museum, (Spanish: Museo Andes 1972) is located in The Old City in Montevideo, the capital city of Uruguay. It is a museum on the story of the 1972 Andes flight disaster related to a plane accident that took place in the Andes in 1972 involving a group of Uruguayan high school rugby players, their friends and relatives that were traveling to Chile when the airplane crashed. Some of them belonged to the Old Christians rugby club. Their story on how they survived the tragedy was transmitted worldwide by means of books, documentaries, pictures and conferences and it has been an inspiration to the film Alive and many books. The museum pays homage to the memory of the 29 people who died due to the plane accident in the Andes and to those who risked their lives to save the rest. It is a reminder of those 16 Uruguayans who came back to life after the 72 days in the Andes freezing weather conditions with no food and proper clothing. It is a private enterprise declared of cultural and turistic interest by the MEC and the Ministerio de Turismo y Deporte de Uruguay.

Museo Casa Zorrilla de San Martín (no website) / Punta Carretas – Montevideo

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The Spanish Romantic poet José Zorrilla, famous for being the author of Don Juan Tenorio, was born in this house. The museum contains documents, manuscripts, furniture and personal mementos of José Zorrilla (1817-1893), which were donated by his widow. The two-storey house has a lovely garden, and its different rooms (kitchen, living room, study, etc.) are carefully decorated to reproduce the typical style of the Romantic Era.

Museo Romántico Casa Montero / Montevideo

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An extravagant merchant’s residence built in 1830 is the fitting site of this museum, filled with period furnishings, furniture, clothing and personal effects of the city’s old elite.

Museo del Descubrimiento-Apostadero Naval Español (no website) / Ciudad Vieja de Montevideo

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This building was the first post office and aduane in Uruguay. Not is a museum that shows objects from the Cristobal Colon age, when he lived here. They used copies with great didactic value. The Apostadero building and old aduane are very representative monuments of the colonial history, one of the oldest that still open to the public.

Museo de la Memoria (sin website) / Montevideo

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The MUME, located in the former mansion of nineteenth century dictator Máximo Santos  on the tree-lined Avenida de las Instrucciones, has operated for the last five years to commemorate Uruguay’s recent history of civil unrest and state repression, which culminated during Uruguay’s 1973-1985 civil-military dictatorship. The “Memoria en Red” initiative supports MUME’s overall objective of promoting human rights and building links with the surrounding community, not only by educating the public about Uruguay’s past, but by giving new generations the tools they need to become human rights advocates in the present.

As always do when we leave a country, we go out slowly thinking if we have missed something, if we have lots something on the road of Uruguay’s museums. If it was affirmative, we asure you that we have done it without bad intention and we will try not to do it again. Next week we will be in Argentina, till then be happy and enjoy life.

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

BENEDETTI, M.
Primavera con una esquina rota
Editorial Edhasa, 2007.
Resumen del libro: Testimonio profundo y dolorido de la enorme conmoción que los acontecimientos políticos provocaron en las relaciones personales. El Uruguay de la dictadura y el del exilio se conjugan en la imagen optimista de la primavera como un futuro promisorio.

BENEDETTI, M.
La tregua
Editorial Cátedra, 2005.
Resumen del libro: Desde su publicación en 1960 la crítica ha saludado a La tregua como una obra clásica de la nueva narrativa latinoamericana. Mario Benedetti registra en esta novela, planteada en forma de diario íntimo, el desarrollo psicológico de un oficinista a punto de jubilarse ?se dice que Uruguay es un país de oficinistas y jubilados . Al tiempo y acorde con su circunstancia vital, el autor traza una crónica de la frustración de la vida cotidiana de la clase media uruguaya y una reflexión sobre lo nacional.

COURTOISIE, R.
Antología: La poesía del siglo XX en Uruguay
Editorial Visor Libros, 2011
Resumen del libro: Selección de poesías esenciales uruguayas de 40 autores: María Eugenia Vaz Ferreira, Roberto de las Carreras, Carlos Sabat Ercasty, Juana de Ibarbourou, Líber Falco, Sarah de Ibáñez, Idea Vilariño, Amanda Berenguer, Humberto Megget, Saúl Ibargoyen Islas, Circe Maia, Jorge Meretta, Jorge Arbeleche, Elías Uriarte, Eduardo Mil án, Elder Silva, Luis Bravo, Hebert Benítez, Silvia Guerra, Jorge Castro Vega, Julio Herrera y Reissig, Delmira Agustini, Fernán Silva Valdés, Alfredo Mario Ferreiro, Susana Soca, Juan Cunha, Mario Benedetti, Ida Vitale, Washington Benavides, Marosa di Giorgio, Salvador Puig, Cristina Peri Rossi, Hugo Achugar, Martha Canfield, Eduardo Espina, Roberto Genta, Mariella Nigro, Aldo Mazzucchelli, Julio Inverso, Gabriel Peveroni.

HUDSON, W.H.
La tierra purpúrea
Editorial El Acantilado, 2005.
Resumen del libro: La tierra purpúrea es de los muy pocos libros felices que hay en la tierra, en palabras de Borges; narra el vagabundeo forzoso de un inglés por la convulsa Banda Oriental (actual Uruguay) y su esperado regreso a Buenos Aires. Considerada unánimemente la obra cumbre de Hudson, la obra llevaba en su primera edición, la de 1885, el elocuente título de La tierra purpúrea que perdió Inglaterra (acortado luego por voluntad expresa del mismo autor): ésta es la descripción humana de un mundo perdido, tan epifánico en su dimensión mítica cuanto soñado, a la que Borges llamó el venturoso acriollamiento de Lamb, su conversión gradual a una moralidad cimarrona que recuerda un poco a Rosseau y prevé un poco a Nietzsche.

 
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