THE CERAMICS AND AZULEJOS OF BARCELONA

​​​When you walk through the streets of Barcelona, it won’t be long before you realise that artistic ceramics are everywhere to be seen. Indeed, the names of many streets or old entrances and exits of the city are inscribed on ceramic tiles or azulejos, inlaid in the stone walls of the old walled city. But they are also found on fountains, presented as a fresco that serves as decoration for the latter, which also bears witness to the city's past and the life that was led there. Get comfortable on a Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation armchair, where you can relax and enjoy the trip while reading this article in order to familiarise yourself with these charming elements of the city to which you should pay particular attention during your stay.

​​​​ 

​​​​​Street name plates

​When strolling through the streets of the Catalan capital, you probably won’t stop to read each and every single street name plate that there are, but a few among them are particularly interesting. Indeed, many of them are made up of 6 traditional Catalan ceramic tiles, which were hand-painted following a 9th century technique with an exterior tile covering.


The Porta Ferriça or Portaferrissa

​The “Porta Ferriça” was one of the gates present in the wall erected around the city of Barcelona in the 13th century, now disappeared. Nowadays it is still possible to admire the public fountain that was installed there in 1680 when the Jesuits asked to move the public fountain that had been installed in 1604 to the other side of the Rambla. The fountain is particularly noteworthy because s​ince 1959 it has been decorated with a ceramic fresco by Joan Baptista Guivernau, which tells the story of life in the city in the Middle Ages.


Ceramics of the Fountain of Santa Anna


Not only is it important for its cultural value, but it is also the oldest source in the city - Wikipedia images

The ceramics of the Fountain of Santa Anna are the work of Josep Aragay. You should really take the time to turn around and look at them, as they are a perfect example of the Classical and Noucentist styles: a Catalan cultural movement of the beginning of the 20th century created as a reaction against Modernism. You will notice the artist's ability to obtain very special colours in a context where the colours were made by the ceramists of the time themselves.

 


Ceramics of Pere Calafell

​Located in Calle Andrade, 184, in the district of Sant Martí de Provençals, Pere Calafel's building houses several recently discovered works in azulejos by Josep Aragay. You will discover portraits and scenes of daily life in noucentist style.


L’Auca del Senyor Esteve


The forerunner of current graphic novels - Images from Wikipedia

To observe this work of art in the open air, go to Petri​txol street. This series of tiles tells a story in the style of a comic strip. Designed by Santiago Rusiñol, it was published in 1907 and later adapted for the Victoria Theatre in 1917.


On the way back, plunge back into the past of the Catalan capital by observing the details of the ceramics in your photos, take advantage of all the comfort on board to rest or admire the beauty of the landscapes that pass before your eyes. On board our Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation trains, you can kick back and relax.



Join the conversation

    Write a comment