Brothers In Arts:       CESAR AND CARLOS MANRIQUE.

Business-woman:        NIEVES CABRERA

Film Director:              ROBERTO PEREZ TOLEDO  

by Norman Warwick

The brother of Lanzazrote´s much loved artist, the late Cesar Manrique, was recently given heart surgery at the Doctor Negrín Hospital, but sadly , in the early hours of Sunday, January 23, Carlos Manrique Cabrera died at the Molina Orosa Hospital in Arrecife, at the age of 96. Carlos Manrique, brother of the well-known Lanzarote artist César Manrique, who died in 1992 in a traffic accident, had been transferred to Gran Canaria at the end of 2021 after suffering a threat of heart attack.

There, at the Doctor Negrín Hospital, he was operated on and later transferred to Lanzarote for his recovery. The truth is that despite the physical strength he has shown throughout his life, his health condition had worsened in recent days and finally on January 23 at five in the morning his heart stopped beating.

People here on the island remember Carlos Manrique (left) as a man with incredible vitality and a great sense of humour. Lately, however, he had been very worried about the deterioration that some spaces were suffering, especially in Arrecife.

It was as soon as  2:00 p.m later on the day of his death that  the wake was opened at the Memora facilities, on the LZ-20 highway, between Arrecife and San Bartolomé. In addition, on the following day, Monday 24th January, the burial of Carlos Manrique took  place from 1 pm in the Church of San Ginés, in Arrecife. 

For her part, the president of the Cabildo de Lanzarote, María Dolores Corujo, expressed her regret and that of the corporation for the death of Carlos Manrique Cabrera and sent her condolences to his family and close friends. 

Likewise, Corujo spoke warmly and affectionately for the César Manrique Foundation with which the deceased had a close and cordial relationship. 

The head of the Island Corporation stressed that over the last few years the vitality and restless spirit of Carlos Manrique had led him to take an interest and show his concern about the degradation of some spaces, especially in the island capital, and recalled his words at the proclamation of the 2019 San Ginés festivities that we reported on these pages. 

 ´In the centenary year of the birth of our brother, of Uncle César for his nephews, of the Manrique that each one carries within, it seems fair to me to ask the authorities to take care of and preserve his work, and to ask all of us to follow his example of commitment to art, culture, territory and life. In this, your Foundation is exemplary. In this year of the centenary and from now on, I also hope that the Government of the Canary Islands, the Cabildo and the town councils do not abandon the path of dialogue and close cooperation that they have just undertaken with the César Manrique Foundation, because, honestly, it is the only way to respect his memory and his legacy, and to successfully face our future together´. 

The president of the Popular Party (PP) of Lanzarote, Astrid Pérez, has also shown her sorrow and expressed it on behalf of her entire party and supoorters.

The mayor of the capital of Lanzarote, Astrid Pérez, conveyed her condolences to all the deceased´s family and friends, highlighting his restless character which led her ´to always be aware of the current situation and the future of the city of Arrecife´.

The mayor also spoke of the city and emotionally recalled that proclamation that Carlos Manrique offered in 2019 to welcome the patron saint festivities of the capital, San Ginés. 

´Carlos (shown right at a recent birthday event) was a great person and an endearing man who liked to chat about his brother and participate in everything that meant preserving Manrique’s legacy and thought,´ we were reminded..

The PSOE of Lanzarote showed their own regret for this sad loss. The island secretary of the PSOE of Lanzarote, María Dolores Corujo, has shown her regret and that of the socialist family for the death of Carlos Manrique Cabrera.

“My deepest condolences and all my affection to his family and to the César Manrique Foundation”, (shown on our cover and at top of this page) said the socialist leader and recalled Carlos Manrique’s sincere commitment to the preservation of his brother’s work and, in general, “to the art, culture, territory and life”, as he said in the proclamation of the San Ginés festivities in 2019.

Corujo finished by pointing out the importance of assuming the challenge that the deceased launched, also in the proclamation of San Ginés, when he then asked the Government of the Canary Islands, the Cabildo and the town councils “not to abandon the path of dialogue and close cooperation that end up to undertake with the César Manrique Foundation”.

About two hundred people gathered in the Church of San Ginés to say their last goodbyes to Carlos Manrique, brother of the famous artist. Relatives, authorities, various personalities of the island and members of the FCM met to say goodbye.

Lanzarote also mourns a woman who earned the respect and affection of many generations. Nieves Cabrera, 92, died in her family home in Mácher, after having been hospitalized for a few days due to health problems.

Nieves (shown in spotted dress, left, at a business awards ceremony), known as the matriarch of the Cabrera Medina Group , which was created in 1967 by her husband (now deceased), the well-known Mamerto Cabrera, and which today is run by her children, was essential for the development and consolidation of the family business.

The wake was held from three in the afternoon in the Plaza de El Pavón, in Tías, where friends of the family said goodbye to Nieves Cabrera, a very close person and loved by her four children, her grandchildren and all her family. The burial was held at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, January 28, in the church of San Ginés, where a Eucharist was offered in honor of Nieves Cabrera. Later, the coffin was taken to the San Román de Arrecife Cemetery, where she will rest with her husband, Mamerto Cabrera.

Throughout the afternoon of Thursday, many people from Lanzarote came to offer their condolences to the family and sent, from companies, organizations, associations and institutions, more than fifty flower crowns in their memory.

The Cabrera Medina group was born as a car rental company in 1967 with five Seat 127s and now operates a fleet of some 10,000 vehicles under the Cicar brand, becoming the main car rental company in the Canary Islands and one of the first in Spain. . In addition, it is the first concessionaire company for the sale of vehicles of brands such as Opel, Seat, Volvo, Fiat and Jeep, among others.

LANCELOT MEDIA also offered condolences to all Nieves´ relatives, especially her children Nieves, Pedro, Mamerto and Ángeles.  

The Cabildo de Lanzarote, too, expressed its condolences to the Cabrera Medina family for the death of Mrs. Nieves Cabrera Camejo, widow of Mamerto Cabrera Medina.

In 1967, Mamerto Cabrera Medina, then a carpenter by profession, together with Mrs. Nieves Cabrera, vacated the carpentry shop they owned in a small garage in Arrecife and created a rental car business, with only five vehicles. It is currently the most important company in its sector in the Canary Islands.

Thus began the fruitful career of the Cabrera Medina Group, one of the companies of which Lanzarote is most proud, given its exemplary nature and great international projection, and which stands out, among other aspects, for its incomparable patronage work, especially in The world of sport.

The president of the Cabildo de Lanzarote, María Dolores Corujo, on her own behalf and on behalf of the entire Corporation, underlined: “The success of the Cabrera Medina group and the great affection shown to it is the result of the tenacious and enthusiastic work of a united family and the valuable group of professionals that make it up. Receive my deepest condolences”.

In 2014, the Cabrera Medina Group deservedly received the Gold Medal of the Canary Islands, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of its creation. More than 50 years later, the Cabrera Medina Group retains its family structure, headed until now by Mrs. Nieves.

The Cabrera Medina Group was distinguished as the best family business in the Canary Islands in 2018.

My column here at Lanzarote Information and my own daily blog at Sidetracks And Detours are each English Language publications. At Lanzarote Information I aim my writing at new English residents and visitors to Lanzarote by reporting, usually through offering news, interviews, previews and reviews, on the island´s arts offer. Sidetracks And Detours  looks at the global arts scene and particularly  at singer songwriters but Lanzarote arts events are also included.

It is through agencies such as Lancelot Digital that I find information at a tangent to my usual subject matter that nevertheless speaks to my love of my new home here at Lanzarote. The pieces on toiday´s pages, for instance, were extrapolated from Lancelot Digital and speak of the island´s attitudes and modernity.

The news service often includes excellent interviews with  artists and I therefore, occasionally, find stories that address people or places that would be in the shaded area of any Venn diagram showing arts and Lanzarote items that might be of interest that might be of interest to both Spanish and English readers.

One such interviewee was Roberto Pérez Toledo (right) who has sadly passed away in Madrid. The film director who has been a reference and source of inspiration on his island of Lanzarote has died of a stroke at the age of 43. Born in Titerroy (1978), he was a well-liked person on the island and belonged to two families of charismatic rabbit athletes. 

Son of Pedro Pérez Domínguez and Carmen Toledo Rodríguez, both lifelong residents of Titerroy, they were among the first to move to the neighborhood when it only had 120 houses in 1957.

The filmmaker was scheduled to participate this Monday in a meeting at the Academy that included the showing of his short films ‘Vuelco’, ‘Los screamones’, ‘RotosS’, ‘Yes to everything’, ‘Tris’, ‘Secret admirer’, ‘Taras ‘, ‘Author’s love’, ‘Whenever I tell it’, ‘Hydroalcoholic’ and ‘Before the eruption’.

His death has coincided with the performance these days of his  first play,  ‘Basic manual of sign language to break hearts’, at the María Guerrero Theater with a production by the National Drama Center.

Pérez Toledo was always known for his work of  inclusion and diversity in his projects. In 2012 he premiered  ‘Six points on Emma’,  (left)  his first feature film as director and screenwriter, with Álex García and Verónica Echegui and with which he won various awards. A year later he participated in the collective feature film ‘ In the end, everyone dies ‘ along with three other directors and a year later he launched the TV movie ‘ Los Amigos Raros ‘, which became a viral phenomenon on the web, where it accumulates more than 22 million visits .

It has been a sad week or  so for the island, but Lanzarote, as always, mourns these lives with dignity and celebrates their achievements with enthusiasm.

The loss of all of the above has been widely and reverantly reported in the Spanish print and electronic media.

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