Want to keep learning?

This content is taken from the Pompeu Fabra University Barcelona's online course, Getting to Know Catalonia: An Introduction to the Catalan Language, Culture and Society. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 14 seconds Today, Eva March, lecturer in the Humanities Department at Pompeu Fabra University, has come to visit us. She is best known for her research on Catalan collecting during the first third of the twentieth century, a topic she has published several books and articles about. In addition, she has coordinated several projects such as the modern art magazine, ACTA ARTIS, or the commemoration ceremony in 2008 which celebrated the 100-year anniversary of the Board of Museums of Catalonia. What this means is that, through some key questions and answers, we will gain a retrospective view of the different Catalan artistic expressions found throughout history including both the works of well-renowned artists as well as popular traditions and festivals.

Skip to 1 minute and 1 second Why is Catalan art so unique? Well, Catalan art actually goes through the same stages has the same evolution as in the rest of European countries art in the context of Western history and in this sense Catalan art is not unique, if you like. What happens is that in the same way as if we think for instance, about Italy, the names that come to mind are the names of Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo the great masters of the Renaissance. In Catalonia this uniqueness and these specific weights that provide a value to universal art belonged to the 20th century.

Skip to 1 minute and 49 seconds And I refer firstly to Gaudí, then Joan Miró, Dalí, Antoni Tàpies and to some extent also to Picasso, because Picasso, though not Catalan, came to Barcelona and his years of training here were totally representative of his evolution as an artist. In all these cases, or in most of them, we see how these artists, despite being absolute reformists, despite revolutionizing the art scene of their time through their radical originality in a certain way, all of them drank from the fountain of tradition. Precisely, in this very museum, in these same rooms where we are now, the Picasso and Romanesque exhibition was held barely a year ago.

Skip to 2 minutes and 40 seconds And it clearly displayed this link of Picasso with Romanesque forms at a time when he was compiling his artistic vocabulary. In the same way, art nouveau, this modernism that emerged in the late 19th century, this modernism that was used to meet the new demands of society that led to the building of markets, factories, cellars and in addition housing this modernism also drank, took its roots plunged Its deepest roots in the Gothic world.

Catalan art: it's unique

The best-known Catalan art worldwide came about in the 20th century, by way of revolutionary artists such as Dalí, Gaudí, Miró and Tàpies.

This video is in Catalan language, so remember to activate the subtitles in English, Spanish or Catalan.

Share this video:

This video is from the free online course:

Getting to Know Catalonia: An Introduction to the Catalan Language, Culture and Society

Pompeu Fabra University Barcelona