What’s The Big Secret About The Coffered Ceiling At Ben Jakober Foundation?

At the Yanick and Ben Jakober Foundation in Alcudia they are so secretive about that coffered ceiling, or artesonado that they have.

artesonado ben jakober

Image taken from www.fundacionjakober.org

I don’t get it. If I had a ceiling like that in my house I’d be unbelievably proud! Mind you, the whole house is a delightful work of art, filled with exciting collections and interesting finds. There’s plenty to be proud of.

But today we are just going to talk about the artesonado, or ceiling.

A few weeks ago, our Winter Activities group met at the beginning of the dirt track where the tarmacked road ends and the way to Es Coll Baix starts.

We left the cars there as there is a little space to park and we walked about forty minutes down to the fundación.

You could drive right down to the entrance of the Ben Jakober Foundation if you wanted but it’s quite potholey and is a pleasant walk anyway.

map fundacion jakober

Image taken from www.fundacionjakober.org

If you want to visit the artesonado you can do so for free on a Thursday. But you do have to make a reservation beforehand. Check the Ben Jakober website for up-to-date information.

When we arrived at the fundación we were met by the resident guide who greeted us warmly, but at the same time instructed us to leave our bags in a cloakroom. We were advised that under no circumstances may we take photos.

But why? Okay, the bags I can understand; maybe we looked like a bunch of thieves there to stuff our bags with all we could and sell it at the Jolly Roger car boot sale the following Saturday. But no photography? Why?

The guide said to us that she was sure we understood, and said “imagine if everybody who came to visit the artesonado took photos of it.” Yeah? I’m imagining. I’m imagining this post full of beautiful images of the stunning old ceiling for my readers to look at.

Anyway, it was not to be. She told us bluntly that if we wanted photos we could buy a postcard.

So that’s why there is just one naff pic at the top of this post, which is the only one I could find online. (Except this one by MasMallorca.es)

The artesonado at the Fundación Yanick y Ben Jakober in Alcudia is very unique and special.

The artesonado is an original Hispano-Muslim polychrome coffered ceiling and is one of a kind, dating from 1498 from Zaragoza. In 2006 it was declared Cultural Heritage of the Balearics.

Though our guide did not give us very much information about the coffered ceiling and its origins, she did say that the couple Yanick and Ben Jakober came across it on a market stall, and that they took care of it, having it restored and then actually making use of it in their house Sa Bassa Blanca, which is now the Fundación in Alcudia.

This house-museum is somewhere that I enjoy visiting bit by bit. It has so many odd misfitting pieces that it’s hard to take it all in in one go. Of course, for me it is easy to visit as the foundation is just down the road, but if you are not from Mallorca it is a bit trickier.

Sometime I’ll tell you about the other parts of the Jakober Foundation that stand out for me…

Have you been to the Ben Jakober Foundation? What did you enjoy about it?

Click here for more to do in Alcudia.

Filed Under: AlcudiaArt in MallorcafeaturedmallorcaspainWinter Activities

About the Author: Lisa, born and grew up in England, live in Mallorca, Spain... Have visited more than 20 countries, have twice as many to yet visit, love sharing experiences....

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  1. Jakober says:

    I just came across your Jan 2015 entry about the Artesenado I am so sorry about your negative experience However the matter of the secret is a joke the text in the guide book saying ” its the best kept secret” etc actually because we want to avoid crowds and buses like at Giverny however we welcome all comers to all parts of the museum and I will certainly make sure that better information is avaible. There is ample parking space for literaly 100 cars as for the photos we want to avoid flashes damging the old master pictures and also try to place postcards and guide books the sale of which could help us defray the cost of the upkeep and permanent improvements. Please come again. Best wishes. Ben Jakober

    • Lisa says:

      Thank you for sharing your point of view. It is much appreciated and I am sure that readers will find it useful to compare views.
      Best wishes, Lisa

  2. Sean Triner says:

    Hi
    We had a wonderful experience there this week (14 Sep ’16). Parked there – the road was fine for our hired 2WD. Maybe we are just used to rougher dirt roads is Australia. Took LOADs of photos. I would have posted some here but the Gravatar thing wasn’t working.
    We met up with Ben too, which was nice. The house, museum of children’s portraits were fantastic and the Socrates room was awesom. Loved the woolly (wooly?) rhino fossil.
    They just don’t want flash photography which is normal and right. Without a tripod the ceiling is pretty tough to photograph.
    Good shop too. Bought a couple of Ben’s sculptures.
    Never met Yanick though, which would have been a bonus.
    Sean

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