Domènech Theme Barcelona
Lluís Domènech Montaner (1850-1923) was born in this city and as said on Modernism Theme Barcelona, he is one of the most famous architects of Barcelona. Walking on the street, you can easily spot not only 1 but many of his works so to discover them, you may need 2 days if you plan to do the guided visit of some buildings, if not 1 day is enough.
You will only discover his main architectures located only in Barcelona which means that I will exclude the less important ones and the ones located in the outskirts of the city thus you will walk on the following districts:
- Horta Guinardó
- Ciutat Vella
Let´s start the first day by the Eixample district, walking from catalunya square to the passeig de gràcia street until the number 35, you will find the Lleó Morera house. Francesca Morera Ortiz contracted the architect in 1902 to reform the Rocamora house dating from 1864. She died in 1904 and her son Albert Lleó i Morera took in charge of the project. Working with the best artisans, the architect was able to create something that most part of the people considered it as the little Catalan Music palace and won in 1906 the prize of the best artistic building of the year.
3 streets above and by turning on the right, you should be on the mallorca street so spotting the number 278, you will discover the Montaner palace.
It owns a kind of italian style mixing with a catalan philosophy. Ramón Montaner commissioned the project in 1889 to Josep Domènech i Estapà but he wasn’t able to complete the work due to some conflicts with the owner so Lluís Domènech i Montaner took the project and finished it in 1893.
The result is a place with 2 floors and an attic space where marble mosaics decorate the floor, a fantastic skylight roof… Since 1980, the building is the head office of the Spanish Government in Barcelona.
On the same street, the Thomas house (mallorca 293) is built between 1895 and 1898 consisting only of 2 levels, the ground and the first floor. The lower part was the atelier of the owner and the upper part, his residence. In 1912, the architect son in law, Francesc Guàrdia built 3 levels more by respecting the neo-gothic front and raising the height of the lateral towers. In 1980, Cristian Cirici i Alomar renovated the building and received the Restoration National Award of the year.
Going on the same direction, 2 streets farther at your right side, you will walk on the girona street, here at the number 113, there is the Lamadrid house. Built in 1902 and with a small superficies, he was able to create a building with a beautiful front where you can admire 3 splendid semicircular balconies situated on the first floor and the gothic art design on the top.
Leaving now the district, you will head to the Gràcia district to discover the Fuster house (passeig de gràcia 132) by walking about 15 minutes. Built between 1908 and 1911, it was his last construction in Barcelona. Contracted by Mariano Fuster who wanted to make a gift to his wife Consol Fabra, the architect worked with his son Pere Domènech i Roure to complete the work. A building made of white marble, glass and slate on which you can appreciate a great harmony of curves and straight lines, the cylindrical tower decorated with sculptures, trilobate windows… Nowadays it is a 5 stars hotel where Woody Allen gave a jazz concert in 2007.
And to end the day, you will visit a building located at “aragó 255”. To discover it, you will have to walk back to the Eixample district and it will take you about 15 minutes.
He built it between 1881 and 1885 by mixing the use of bricks with iron and served originally as the head office of the Montaner i Simón editorial.
Actually, it is a museum called Antoni Tàpies Foundation founded in 1984 and dedicated, like you can guess, mainly to the life and the work of the spanish painter Antoni Tàpies and by looking on the roof, you will discover one of his sculptures called Núvol i Cadira (Cloud and Chair).
For the second day, there are only 2 visits. You will go first to the Horta Guinardó district to visit the Santa Creu i Sant Pau hospital (sant antoni maria claret 167) and the closer metro is L5 sant pau-dos de maig.
It has been designed as a garden and pavilion mosaics with the collaboration of some great artisans and his son Pere Domènech between 1901 and 1930. The building has been built to replace the obsolete hospital Sant Pau in the Raval neighborhood and the result is a surprising facility with many pavilions surrounded by gardens and streets in order to improve the life quality of the patients. Open to the public only from monday to sunday at 10h-14h, don’t miss this masterpiece declared as Unesco World Heritage Site in 1997.
Next to the Ciutat Vella district to visit the Catalan Music palace (palau de la música 4-6). To go there, take back the metro until verdaguer station then take the metro L4 to urquinaona station.
It was constructed between 1905 and 1908 and declared as Unesco World Heritage Site in 1997. Commissioned by the Orfeó Català society and working with the best artisans, the building is a masterpiece which consists of an iron structure with crystal wall in order to let in the sunlight. Later, some additional works have been done by Óscar Tusquets and Carles Díaz, the first part was from 1982 to 1989 and the second part was in 2000 opening the lateral front for anyone to appreciate better the new design, the incredible sculptures and ceramics covered the wall. Guided visits are organized each day but limited to 55 persons so don’t hesitate to buy your ticket.
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