In all ages and disciplines noteworthy figures stand out from the arts, humanities, thinking, politics and military rule who were born in or had a special connection with Málaga and its province.
One of the most important personalities is Bernardo de Gálvez, born in Macharaviaya in 1746. He became governor of New Orleans and Western Louisiana, a post from which he carried out a fundamental role in the War of Independence of the United States of America.
If there’s an illustrious personality above all connected with the name of Málaga and art, it’s that of Pablo Picasso. The painter was born on 25 October 1881 in Plaza de la Merced in Málaga, one of the greatest artists in history.
In terms of thinkers María Zambrano particularly stands out, born in Vélez-Málaga and one of the most emblematic figures of 20th century Spanish intellectualism.
The Generation of ‘27 was one of the most influential Spanish literature groups of the 20th century. Many of its members were Malagans, such as Manuel Altolaguirre and Emilio Prados, José Moreno Villa, José María Hinojosa and María Zambrano herself. Málaga was also the setting for the publication of the Revista Litoral, a literary magazine that was key in the forming of the Generation of ‘27.
In popular culture, special mention can be made of people linked to bullfighting such as Pedro Romero, a Ronda native and considered the first bullfighter of his time, and Cayetano Ordóñez, Niño de la Palma, and his son Antonio Ordóñez, one of the most important bullfighters of the 20th century, also all from Ronda.
Land of welcome
Málaga has been and continues to be a land of welcome. From the Generation of ‘27 poets, Jorge Guillén and Vicente Aleixandre, who called its capital a “city of paradise”, to the British writer and hispanicist Gerald Brenan, who spent a large period of his life in Churriana and Alhaurín el Grande.
The American writer Ernest Hemingway spent long periods in Málaga and Ronda as the guest of his friend the bullfighter Antonio Ordóñez. The film director Orson Welles, too, friend and admirer of the art and whose ashes have rested since 1987 in the El Recreo farm, in Ronda.
José María el Tempranillo was a rebel bandit and liberal who operated in the Sierra Morena mountains. His death in Alameda at the age of 28 has always linked him to legends of these lands.