When we think of Barcelona, the eclectic art of Antoni Gaudí immediately springs to mind. It is present in every corner of the city. Or we think of the Olympic Ring with the tower designed by Santiago Calatrava; but these are only two aspects of the exquisite beauty of the Catalan capital which has been able to blend old and new in a unique and unpredictable way. The traditional Gothic architecture has a discrete historical flavour, while the buildings that have appeared in the past 10 years reflect modern art trends like Cubism, Neo-plasticism, and Futurism. Named the European capital of innovation in 2014, the city boasts extremely distinctive urban planning because of the unusual bevelled corners on city blocks that provide more open street intersections, with extra space for outdoor cafés and seating, that give the city its particularly sociable community atmosphere. Jean Nouvel, Herzog & de Meuron, Richard Meier and Norman Foster are some of the famous figures in the long list of architects who have made Barcelona an iconic city in contemporary architecture. This guide leads us to discover some fascinating areas in one of Europe’s most captivating and surreal cities.
Chiara Ingrosso is an Architect and PhD in History of Architecture at the University of Naples Luigi Vanvitelli.