New in Town: Museo del Humor

(Photo by Nelson Piedra)

Recently, a new museum was inaugurated in the city, celebrating the local comic and caricature scene. The museum exhibits a collection that spans from the 1800’s to the present and depicts different political and cultural stages of the country.

Artist César Hipólito Bacle, who produced a series of lithography’s that mocked the porteño women’s exaggerated hairdos, first introduced comics and caricatures to the locals in 1837. From then on the genre moved from fashion to politics and became very popular as an expression of dissident political opinions. So much so that president Juarez Selman prohibited Eduardo Sojo, a Spanish journalist and caricaturist who founded the Don Quixote magazine in 1884, to draw his caricature.  Later the magazine supported the 1890 revolution and played an important role in the downfall of the Juarez Selman Government.

Another very important magazine at the time was Caras y Caretas. This magazine not only characterized and illustrated the political situation at the time, but also, gave a lot of importance to the cultural icons that forged the national identity, such as the gaucho. Caras y Caretas became emblematic throughout twentieth century Argentina, and incorporated many novelties that were then copied by other smaller publications.

In the thirties comic strips acquired an increased notoriety as there began to be illustrated adaptations of different stories and books such as Hansel and Gretel and Robinson Crusoe. During this period the famous Patoruzu comic strip, by Dante Quinterno, was published in La Razon and El Mundo newspaper, and depicted the life of an innocent Telhuelche Indian with supernatural strength who was tutored by a playboy porteño. Later on it became an independent publication reaching record circulation.

During the next decade comic strips flourished and began to incorporate different themes, mocking world leaders during the Second World War, and also showing some of the cultural changes in western society, as for example the role of workers and women.

During the military dictatorship local publications dwindled as censorship was instilled, however it was during this period that some of the most renowned Argentine comic artists appeared including Quino who commercialized his work abroad with his emblematic character Mafalda, and later Caloi and Fontanarrosa, amongst others.

Now a day’s comic art is still very much alive in the local culture, and many of the mentioned comic artists are well known by a large part of the population.

The comic art museum brings together all the different periods and characters of this important tradition which has helped to define the local identity.

Museo del humor

Av. de los Italianos 851, Puerto Madero

Opening hours: Mon-Fri 11am-6pm, Sat-Sun 10am-7pm.

Tickets: 10 pesos.

This Week in Buenos Aires

Monday

(Photo by marise caetano)

A new exhibit on renowned Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce is being held at the MALBA until the 20th of August.  The artist´s work, which focuses on reconstructing history through artistic quotes of newspapers and other media, has earned him international acclaim. Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta.

In the afternoon stop for some tea and sweet treats at the traditional Confitería Las Violetas and then shake off the cold at the nearby La Bomba del Tiempo, a percussion orchestra that has become one of the local absolute musts. Centro Cultural Konex Sarmiento 3131, Abasto. 4864-3200

Tuesday

(Photo by violinha)

Comic art fans should check out the new Museo del humor that features works by Quino and Fontanarrosa, amongst others. There are also regular screenings of animation shorts.  While you’re in the area stop by the stunning ecological reserve, which is just around the corner. Av. de los Italianos 851, Puerto Madero.

If you’re looking for a laugh don’t miss the Grin Go! Stand Up comedy Show starting at 9pm at the Absinth Resto Bar. Bartolomé Mitre 1695, Downtown. 4371-6486. Be sure to make a reservation by emailing gringo@comicosdepie.com.ar.

 

Wednesday

(Photo by Jack Zalium)

The Museo de Arte Decorativo is a gorgeous museum in Recoleta and it is currently showcasing a very special exhibit of Renaissance art.  We recommend you visit this architectural and artistic hotspot on a weekday as there are long lines during the weekend to see the impressive Italian paintings. Also, the museum cafe is a lovely place for a hot cup of tea and cakes.  Av.del Libertador 1902, Recoleta. 4801-8248.

Unicorn Huset is the most promising new addition to the Buenos Aires night scene. Trendsetters and world travelers meet at this Scandinavian inspired resto/bar-club for some stylish upbeat fun! Open from Wednesday’s to Saturday’s from 9pm onwards. Honduras 5730, Palermo Hollywood.

Thursday

(Photo by cyph3r)

Take a trip down the historical A-line Subway and travel through time whilst stopping to visit some of the city’s emblematic spots such as the Casa Rosada, Cafe Tortoni and Congress.

For a unique evening, book your place at Fierro Hotel’s Thursday wine tasting and sample some great Argentine wines, chosen by the president of the Argentine Sommelier Association Andres Rosberg and in-house Sommelier Martin Bruno. Tastings, which include special tapas from Hernán Gipponi Restaurant, cost 25 USD per person and are limited to 7 people. Soler 5862, Palermo. 3220-6800.

Friday

(Photo by Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires)

Stop by La Rural, the annual agricultural and livestock show, and get a feel for the Argentine campo, where so much of the local identity and economy has been forged. The fair takes place from the 19th to the 31st of July at La Rural. Av. Sarmiento 2704, Palermo.

In the evening, catch a live show at 10pm at Boris Club de Jazz, one of the hippest jazz venues in Palermo.  Gorriti 5568, Palermo,  info@borisclub.com.ar, 4777-0012.

Saturday and Sunday

Remember to make a reservation for Hernán Gipponi’s unique must-try brunch, served on Saturdays and Sundays! Soler 5862,  Palermo Hollywood.  3220-6800.  info@hgrestaurant.com.ar.

La Rural, the annual agricultural and livestock show, will give you a feel for the Argentine campo, where so much of the local identity and economy has been forged. The fair takes place from the 19th to the 31st of July. Av. Sarmiento 2704, Palermo.

On Sunday the Colón theatre is staging their new opera program featuring Erwartung, by Arnold Schönberg and Marie Pappenheim, and Hagith by Karol Szymanowski and Felix Dörmann. Tickets here

Top 5 Alfajores

(Photo by Silvio Tanaka)

The alfajor is a typical sandwich like snack made up of two “cookies” usually filled by, you guessed it, dulce de leche, (although there are variety’s filled with fruit jams and chocolate as well) and covered in chocolate, confectionary, sugar or coconut. Each region of the country has its own type of alfajor, which varies its fillings and dough type. The most well known are the Cordoba alfajores, with an airy dough typically filled with fruit jams and chocolate and coated with a sugar glaze, the northern alfajores which are often filled with meringue, and the coast alfajores which have a more compact dough and are generally covered in chocolate. Below are our favorite five for you to seek and sample.

Havanna: This famous Mar del Plata alfajor company is probably the best-known producer of these top-quality treats. Their chocolate alfajor is what made them famous and it is everything it should be, plus, they are easy to find and can be bought at the airport to take back home.

Estancia el Rosario: This is the epitome of the Cordoba alfajor and is quite different from the coast versions we usually get in Buenos Aires.  Their must try`s are the fruit filled kind, which is typical of this region, and their dulce de leche ones are also sublime. Find the addresses of stores in Buenos Aires that sell their products here.

La Olla de Cobre:  Although not so readily available as the other two, these Areco delicacies are well worth the trip to the countryside. Plus this is a great place for chocolate too, made from scratch starting from the processing of the cacao bean to the delicious end product.

Tresam: These extra sized alfajores come from Rosario and are filled with top quality San Ignacio dulce de leche. They are most well known for their alfajor de maizena, which is made with cornflour and decorated on the sides with coconut.

Del Tucuman: As the name suggests these traditional delicacies come from the North of the country. Their typical alfajor is called cicero or casita, and is filled with meringue and cane sugar; a totally different alfajor from what we generally see in Buenos Aires.

Buenos Aires for Kids

(Photo by Mora)

During July, Argentine children have winter holidays, and a broad variety of activities are offered for the young ones. Below are a list of fun activities and sights to visit with children.

Parks

The city is full of beautiful parks and in Palermo, the Rosedal is one of the most attractive. You can rent pedal boats to go around the lake. Nearby are the Japanese gardens where it is common to see kids with their grandparents enthusiastically feeding the fish.

The Planetarium is another great spot to go with children. It is currently showcasing the immersive show “Journey to the Stars” which traces stars through time. The experience was created in collaboration with the NASA, the American Museum on Natural Science in New York and a group of renowned scientists. Av. Sarmiento and Belisario Roldan, Palermo.

Fun Parks

Parque de la Costa: Tigre is an interesting place to visit in the outskirts of the city and boat rides and other fun activities abound in this unique district. One of the main attractions for children in this area is the Parque de la Costa where roller coasters and cotton candy promise to seduce the heart of every child.

República de Los Niños: This Disney-inspired children’s theme park on the outskirts of La Plata was built in the early fifties for civic learning. The team of architects based the design on stories by Hans Christian Andersen, the Grimm brothers and legends by Tennyson and Mallory. The park also includes a doll museum with dolls from all over the world. The theme park can be visited every day from 10am-6pm. Camino General Belgrano and 501, M. B. Gonnet, La Plata. 0221-484-1409.

Zoos

The Buenos Aires Zoo is a special place in the city, not only because it displays a large variety of exotic animals, but also because it is an important research center and has beautiful architecture that dates back to the late 1800´s.  It also hosts many special events for children. Av. Las Heras y Av. Sarmiento.

Temaiken Biopark: This popular well-kept biopark on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, in Escobar, is more than a zoo; it aspires to be a combination of Botanical Garden, Zoo, Aquarium, and Natural History and Anthropology Museum. A guaranteed child pleaser. There are special buses that take you there leaving from Plaza Italia.

Museums

Museo de los niños: This interactive museum for children in the Abasto shopping mall is a small scale reproduction of the city and allows kids to look at how businesses function and to play at being a part of them. A popular place for the young ones!

Buque Museo Fragata: This frigate commissioned by the navy in 1898 to be used as a training vessel is now docked in Puerto Madero and is open as a museum.

Museo Participativo de Ciencias: This fun interactive science museum is set inside the Centro Cultural Recoleta, right next to the famous Recoleta Cemetery. Its motto is “Prohibido no tocar” which translates to Forbidden not to touch, and pretty much sums up the idea.

Museo de Ciencias Naturales de La Plata: This famous natural sciences museum in La Plata has a permanent exhibit that traces the history of life from the inorganic to the organic concluding with mankind and culture. It showcases over 2,500,000 objects including dinosaur fossils.  Paseo del Bosque S/Nº. La Plata. (54-221) 425-7744 / 9161 / 9638. museo@museo.fcnym.unlp.edu.ar.

Museo del Titere (Puppet Museum): The Puppet Museum in San Telmo has a beautiful collection of puppets from all over the world as well as a specialized library and an antique puppet theatre where shows are occasionally staged. Piedras 905, San Telmo. 4307 6917.

MALBA: The MALBA museum of Latin American art regularly offers special activities for children where different works of art from the museum are discussed. The discussions are then followed by a creative activity where they make their own work related to what they saw.  For these winter holidays they have also organized a recycling workshop and a live presentation of how different things from daily life, such as soap and knits, are made.

Theatre and shows

Winter is also the time for children’s theatre productions. The city government organizes many of these, including clown, dance and puppet shows. (Find full schedule here).

The annual Disney on Ice is also a big hit and features ice-skating performances of Disney musicals.

Rosario Getaway

(Photo by pablodf)

Rosario is the third largest city in Argentina, after Buenos Aires and Cordoba, and, at just 298 km from the capital, it is a common destination for Porteños on a short visit. It´s architectural and historical relevance, as well as its vibrant cultural life and privileged setting over the Paraná River, make it an interesting place to visit.

The most popular attractions include the monument to the Argentine flag, where it was first hoisted in 1812; the Plaza San Martin, which is surrounded by Italian neo-renaissance, German neoclassic and art deco architectural styles; an art nouveau- modernist route; the art deco Pasaje Monroe; Batten Cottage, which looks like a street out of London; Parque de España, which was funded by the Spanish and opens to the Paraná river; El Bajo, a neighborhood that overlooks the river with cultural and gastronomic options; the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Rosario (MACRo) which exhibits the largest collection of Argentine contemporary art in the country. and the Museo Municipal de Bellas Artes Juan B. Castagnino (the largest after the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Buenos Aires).  Of course, the Paraná River is an attraction in itself and there are many water related activities to participate in as well. Additionally, Rosario is the birthplace of many renowned Argentines including artist Antonio Berni, comic artist Fontanrosa, the polemic Che Guevara, and football star Messi.

How to get there:

Local flights to Rosario are offered by Aerolinas Argentinas and leave from Aeroparque every day. The flight lasts approximately an hour and a two-way ticket costs approximately 600 pesos, depending on the season.

There are also two trains that leave from Retiro train station from Monday- Friday and take approximately 7 hours. Returns from Rosario are from Sunday-Thursday. A one-way ticket costs between 20-70 pesos depending on the train and seating. The train schedule is available here.

Another option is to go by bus. The drive takes approximately 3-5 hours (depending on the service) leaving from Retiro bus station and there are many companies that offer this route. One-way tickets cost approximately 150 pesos. (Find tickets with Urquiza here.)

Where to stay:

Pullman City Center Rosario: This 5 star hotel has a casino, tennis courts, pool and more.

Barisit House Hotel: This centric boutique hotel is a renovated house from the 1900´s. It is ideally located and it has a pool and serves a buffet breakfast.

This Week in Buenos Aires

Tuesday

(Photo by Thundershead)

Stop by the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes to check out the new Real/Virtual exhibit, featuring Argentine kinetic art from the 70´s. Av. Del Libertador 1473, Recoleta. 5288-9999

Whilst in the area remember to stop by the Palais de Glace where a special photography exhibit is being held until the 9th of July.  Opening hours: Tue-Sun midday-8pm. Posadas 1725, Recoleta

In the evening, at the Centro Cultural San Martin, Catalan Guillermo Calliero will be playing for the jazzology program starting at 8.30pm. Sarmiento 1551, Downtown.

Starting at 9pm at Cafe Rivas in San Telmo, the weekly Gringo Stand Up will provide a night of laughter and jokes in English. Estados Unidos 302, San Telmo.

 

Wednesday

(Photo by Amanky)

Book your place for Teresita’s empanadas class where you will learn the secret to this delicious local staple and then, the best part, you will get to eat them and drink Mendoza wines! More information here.

Later on stop by one of these new city hotspots  or, check out one of our favorite Palermo bars!

 

Thursday

(Photo by J)

ANDA Responsible Travel is a tour agency that promotes social and environmentally friendly tourism.  One of the alternatives they offer is booking one of their experts to discuss in-depth economy, politics, history and culture of Argentina over coffee.  Choose one of the city’s historical cafes and put yourself in context.  More information here.

For a unique evening, book your place at Fierro Hotel’s Thursday wine tasting and sample some great Argentine wines, chosen by the president of the Argentine Sommelier Association Andres Rosberg and in-house Sommelier Martin Bruno. Tastings, which include special tapas from Hernán Gipponi Restaurant, cost 25 USD per person and are limited to 7 people. Soler 5862, Palermo. 3220-6800.

The Colón Theatre is one of the city’s hottest attractions and for good reason. Starting at 8.30pm, there will be a concert of romantic classical music (Claroscuros e Intensidades) making for a great opportunity to experience the theatres acoustics and elegance. Tickets here.

 

Friday

(Photo by Chile por Karine)

A new exhibit on renowned Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce is being held at the MALBA until the 20th of August. Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta.

If you’re traveling with kids don’t miss the Disney on Ice shows from the 13th of July to the 27th of July at the Luna Park Stadium. Tickets here.

No visitor to the city can leave without taking a tango lesson and the informal and friendly La Catedral is just the place to do it. Sarmiento 4006, Almagro.

 

Saturday and Sunday

(Photo by salem was here)

The Colón Theatre is one of the city’s hottest attractions and for good reason. On Saturday at 11am there will be a free concert featuring the Petrus String Quartet. Tickets must be picked up in advance at the theatre. Av Belgrano 836, Downtown.

Throughout the weekend there will be a special Ikebana exhibit at the Japanese gardens in Palermo. Av. Casares 2966, Palermo. 

Long Weekend in Buenos Aires

(Photo by J-Cornelius)

The 9th of July is the Argentine Independence Day, so Monday will be a holiday. With the Caminos y Sabores taking place and the celebrations of the national festivity, the weekend promises to be full of tradition and local delicacies.

Saturday

Remember to make a reservation for Hernán Gipponi’s famous one of a kind brunch! Soler 5862,  Palermo Hollywood.  3220-6800.  info@hgrestaurant.com.ar.

There will be Armenian celebrations at Avenida de Mayo and Bolivar starting at midday. Typical food and dances will be on display.

The annual Caminos y Sabores  regional food fair is the perfect chance to get to know the culinary traditions from around the country. The fair takes place from the 6th to the 9th of July at La Rural in Palermo. Sarmiento 2704, Palermo

A new exhibit on renowned Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce is being held at the MALBA until the 20th of August. Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta.

At 4pm there will be a unique marimba presentation by Noriko Tsukagoshi at the Japanese Gardens. Book your place at 4804-9141 or at cultura@jardinjapones.org.ar. Av. Alcorta and Av. Caseres, Palermo.

Don’t miss the Colón Theatre’s production of La Sylphide (The Sylph). Choreography by Pierre Lacotte according to Filippo Taglioni, music by Jean-Madeleine Schneitzhoeffer, director- Javier Logioia.  3rd, 4th, 5th, 7th and 8th of July.  Tickets here.

Sunday

Remember to make a reservation for Hernán Gipponi’s famous one of a kind brunch, now served on Saturdays too! Soler 5862,  Palermo Hollywood.  3220-6800.  info@hgrestaurant.com.ar.

The annual Caminos y Sabores  regional food fair is the perfect chance to get to know the culinary traditions from around the country. The fair takes place from the 6th to the 9th of July at La Rural in Palermo. Sarmiento 2704, Palermo

A new exhibit on renowned Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce is being held at the MALBA until the 20th of August. Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta.

Starting at 4pm there will be a free eco/benefit concert, sponsored by Coca Cola at the Obelisk. The event will feature live music by local rock icon Vicentico and others, and will aim at collecting as many plastic bottles as possible from the crowds to later recycle them. The proceeds of the recycling of the bottles will go to providing water to a Santiago del Estero school.

Don’t miss the Colón Theatre’s production of La Sylphide (The Sylph). Choreography by Pierre Lacotte according to Filippo Taglioni, music by Jean-Madeleine Schneitzhoeffer, director- Javier Logioia.  3rd, 4th, 5th, 7th and 8th of July.  Tickets here.

Monday

Book your place for the special 9 de Julio brunch at Hernán Gipponi Restaurant. Soler 5862,  Palermo Hollywood.  3220-6800.  info@hgrestaurant.com.ar.

A new exhibit on renowned Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce is being held at the MALBA until the 20th of August. Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta.

From 11-8pm there will be patriotic celebrations at the Feria de Mataderos where a special folklore festival will be held for the occasion. Av. Lisandro de la Torre and Av. De los Corrales, Mataderos.

At the Peña del Colorado there will be a special folklore concert by  Tomás Lipan at 12.30pm. In the evening they will hold their weekly tango peña with a milonga lesson at 8.30 pm and the peña at 10pm. Guemes 3657, Palermo. 4822-1038.

From 8pm-10pm the popular drum orchestra La Bomba del Tiempo will  be holding their weekly percussion fest with special gusts  Richard Serranía and Lucas Kinoshita from Brazil and Marc Shulman from New York. Sarmiento 3131, Abasto.

Local Flavors at Caminos y Sabores 2012

(Photo by mccopa)

The 2012 Caminos y Sabores fair will be taking place from the 6th-9th of July, and is ideal for those who would have liked to travel more around the country, getting to know the particularities of the different Argentine regions and provinces.

During this four-day event, typical foods and crafts from around Argentina will be on display at La Rural in Palermo. The exhibited products will range from olive oil, to homemade preserves, to cured hams and smoked Patagonian trout, to a variety of cheeses and wool, leather and other crafts as well as typical music. Additionally there will be a special Cooking Room where different Argentine chefs will be preparing unique regional delicacies, such as pacu fish and boar meat, made with local ingredients. A timetable of the Cooking Room can be found here.  There will also be a series of workshops and conferences about brewing mate, making artisanal beer, the history and tradition of the asado, and olive oil, amongst others (schedule here).

Caminos y Sabores

6th-9th of July from midday-9pm.

Tickets: 40 pesos per person per day.

Av. Sarmiento 2704, Palermo.

Parrilla Tour Buenos Aires

(Photo by Bud_Spencer)

Most visitors that come to Buenos Aires have a couple of must do´s on their list, and eating meat at a traditional parrilla is definitely on the top of it. Of course there are a lot of great spots to do this, and many to recommend, but for those looking for a full parrilla experience, the Parrilla Tour is mandatory.

There are two versions of this carnivorous adventure; one takes place in the San Telmo neighborhood, the other in Palermo. Both include stops at three different neighborhood parrillas of different styles, and a grand finale at an ice-cream parlor (newcomers to Argentina may not know it yet, but Argentine ice-cream is the best.) The guides have interesting information about Argie cuisine and culture, and also make sure to recommend the top cuts.

Both tours last approximately three hours. The Palermo tour takes place on Tuesdays and Fridays and the San Telmo tour takes place on Wednesdays and Saturdays.  Advanced booking is required and can be done at 155 808 9687 or by email to info@parrillatour.com.

Fernando Bryce at the MALBA

(Photo by C-Monster)

From the 29th of June to the 20th of August the MALBA museum will be featuring a special exhibit of renowned Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce’s works.

The exhibition, which was organized by the Lima Art Museum (MALI), is the first anthology of the artist to be showcased in Latin America and will display a special selection of his drawings and illustrations from both public and private international collections.

Bryce’s works, which consist of hand drawn copies in ink of historical documents, newspapers, and magazines, amongst others, seek to question the media, the different versions of key moments in political and economic history and the ideologies behind them.

MALBA opening hours:

Thursdays-Mondays and public holidays: midday-8pm

Wednesdays: midday-9pm

Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta.