Archive for January, 2010

Hippo Hunting

crystal caves 500

Alas no hippos were seen. Nor giraffe. But we did find an abandoned cave house beneath a Moorish watch tower covered in crystals. Enormous crystals too. To me this is a landscape painters paradise especially at this time of the year, the sun low in the sky stretching shadows across the plain.

valley of the crystal cave 500

We saw sheep with a shepherd, one or two foxes and a golden eagle. But no hippos or giraffe or saber-tooth tiger.

venta micena 500

This is Venta Micena, a stones throw from Los Gázquez up on the alto plano in the province of Granada near the town of Orce. Orce ‘the cradle of European civilization’.

It was here that in 1976 one Josep Gibert and others from his institute of paleantology found a fragment of a human skull which has come to be called Orce Man. It is the oldest homo erectus fossil to be found in Europe which calls for the suggestion that this is the first settlement by early humans in Europe. And they lived side by side with hippos and giraffes and saber-toothed tigers.



Joya; escribir también welcomes Daam Nillan.

Joya; escribir también welcomes Daam Nillan to Cortijada Los Gázquez this weekend and in anticipation of his arrival we asked him to write a few words and illustrate them with his photographs…

Daam Nillan

By Roman Roads

by Roman roads we’ll go, running

b) pick-me-ups as price inquires and
c) over pedestrians, turning straight-

shooters into city streets shooting-up straight

so what small number kept their stubs from
the Soprano’s on Broadway,    (not the screenplay)

had reason to redeem after the second act bent
shotguns into hydraulic shovels and

could strip-mine for sulfur, charcoal and salt-

the percentage spent getting somewhere
amounts to the returning




Daam Nillan will be making a presentation of his words and pictures at Cortijada Los Gázquez on the evening of Saturday 13th of February. If you would like to come along please contact us through this blog…



Los Mundos Pequeños

snow on furrows

grass shadow in snow

mini trees



iPad through Snow @ Los Gázquez

LG,gabar,la sagra

To the left El Gabar, to the right Las Almohallas, in the distance La Sagra and in the middle in the Hoya de Carrascal, Cortijada Los Gázquez.




The Independent on Sunday - Travel

Indi on Sunday 25th January 2010 copyOK so small is beautiful… but under closer inspection!

Indi on Sunday 25th January 2010 copy 2



The Sunday Times

Sunday Times-travel

An innate sense of modesty prevailed last week which resulted in Los Gázquez not celebrating the good work of an exceptional PR.

But here we are in The Sunday Times - Travel section.

And we are delighted.

For those interested in taking a creative course with Los Gázquez you can find more information by clicking here

For those just wanting a holiday in the peace and seclusion of this natural wilderness you can see our rates by looking here

For those interested in the Joya residency you can find more information here



La Muela, Chica Muela and the Moon…

La Muela, Chica Muela and the Moon 500



Wanted / Volunteer for ‘green build’ studio

studio 2

Cortijada Los Gázquez is looking for a volunteer who (either with experience or is just keen and able) would like to volunteer to help out with a green build. Naturally board and lodging is on the house and all they would have to do is get themselves here.

The construction will be a modification to an existing building in order to convert it into a second studio for the Joya residency. The construction will be cordwood and cob built within a post and beam type of construction. All materials will be taken from our land.

Expect the experience to be rewarding and hard work with lots of sunshine and good company.



Joya. Artists Residence / no.20 / Cristina Sáez / 14-27.06.2010


portrait_by_Keita_Yasukawa“For the Joya residency at Cortijada los Gázquez I am proposing a project provisionally titled “Inside-out, upside-down and all around”, an investigation into the relationship between the mechanics of vision and optics, between what it means to look at the world through a lens and to experience it from within.
My plan is to turn the studio into a giant camera obscura and to photograph the upside-down images of the outside world projected onto the wall. I expect I will split my time between taking photographs of the natural landscape around the Cortijada and photographing in the studio. This will allow me to observe and experiment with the basic principle behind photography and the physics of human vision, the upside-down image projected onto the wall of the camera obscura in parallel with the image projected onto the back of the eye.
During the residency, I will gather hundreds of sequences of images from both the outside and the inside of the camera obscura, which I will afterwards edit into a short film, allowing me to explore the relationship between physics, technology and the phenomenology of vision.

camera obscure drawing

I am excited about the possibilities that the Joya residency offers, as it combines an astonishing natural environment with the availability of studio space, allowing me to carry out a project that has been in my mind for some time. Having the space and time to concentrate solely on my investigation and production is in my experience a productive and fulfilling way of working, and I have no doubt it will advance my practice into new and unexpected territories”.

Cristina Sáez is a Spanish born (Bilbao) artist now based in London. You can find more information about her  here and here.



Buenos Aires @ Los Gázquez

strange cloud

… or fair winds (60km an hour/38mph) yesterday took the corners off clouds pinning them against the upper atmosphere. The wind turbine took gusts in excess of the average wind speed sounding like a Spitfire in conflict and the solar powered batteries bubbled whilst topping out at 58v.

15.1.2010 sagra

This morning saw the high winds collapse to a light breeze from La Sagra, my Notre Dame, snow capped and peeking it’s peak above the cloud inversion on the Sierra de Oso.

Today is warm and sunny at 18 degrees Centigrade. That’s 64.5 Fahrenheit. Must chop some wood.



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