National Museum of Decorative Arts

Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas

Madrid's National Museum of Decorative Arts is housed in a 19th century palace overlooking the Parque del Retiro. Its rich collection mainly consists of furniture, ceramics, and decorative pieces from Spain dating back to Phoenician times.

The exhibits cover over sixty rooms in the building's five floors, with the highlight being a fine 18th century kitchen that was moved to the museum from a mansion in the city of Valencia. Of special note is a panel of 1,500 tiles depicting a domestic scene from that time.

Other special pieces include Asian ornaments and excellent ceramics from the town of Talavera de la Reina, a busy market town known for its pottery.

The 16th and 17th centuries are the best represented, with Gothic carvings, crosses, alabaster figurines, tapestries, and baroque furnishings.

In total there are about 30,000 different objects used to decorate the most opulent Spanish mansions and palaces over the years.

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