View of the Port of La Luz and the City of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria


This watercolor landscape, painted in about 1889, is by Eliseo Meifrèn y Roig (1859−1940), a Catalonian artist who specialized in impressionist marine seascapes. It represents a partial view of the Bay of La Isleta and Puerto de La Luz, near the northeast tip of the island of Gran Canaria, with the house of the maritime pilot and the English barges that supplied the coal trade. In the distance is the town of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, capital of the Spanish province of Las Palmas. The Puerto de La Luz, initially planned in the 1850s, was built in 1883−1903, largely through the drive of Fernando de León y Castillo (1842−1918), an influential local politician. A port existed there from the late 15th century. It was at one time a base for ships traveling between Spain and its New World colonies. In the late 19th century, it became an important stop for ships on routes between America, Africa, and Europe. The contract to build La Luz port was awarded to the British firm Swanston and Company and the work was overseen by Juan de León y Castillo, an engineer and brother of Fernando. This painting is in the collections of the León y Castillo House Museum, in Gran Canaria.

Last updated: June 13, 2016