Catalan Modernism is the Art Noveau architectural style created in Barcelona, in 1880, it reached its splendorous era in the 1900’s. At that time Barcelona and Catalonia with its own personality and vanguard architecture produced a general trend emerging across Europe.
So in the late 19th century architectural trends in Europe escaped the traditional designs to seek much more innovative ways to build in the 20th century, which gave an enormous importance to aesthetics. This movement was a result of the industrial revolution with the advances derived from it, such as electricity, railways and the steam engine, all those changed entirely the way of living of the population and made a growth of cities, by establishing important industries managed by an increasing number of bourgeois. That was the birth of Modernism”Art Noveau” as an urban and bourgeois style.
Nevertheless, initially Modernism rejected a rough style of industrial architecture of the first half of the 19th century, and developed new the construction materials to design architectural concepts based in nature and organic elements, used in the forms of buildings and figures in their facades. The architects placed in their buildings façades natural sculptures showing animals (birds, butterflies…) nature ítems (leaves, flowers…) all as decorative elements, also cornices colored ceramic elements were placed. The windows and balconies wrought iron railings, which were carved artistically expressing motifs inspired by nature.
The development of modernism in Catalonia is encouraged by the bourgeoisie, which feels Catalan and cultured and sensitive to art. This bourgeoisie sees in this new architecture the way to satisfy your craving for modernization, to express their Catalan identity, and to highlight discreetly wealth and distinction.
There were many Modernism architects, but amongst them Antoni Gaudí, Lluís Domènech i Montaner and Josep Puig i Cadafalch where the most advanced at their time, they designed the most prominent buildings in Catalan modernist style. Most of them are in Barcelona and were listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage: The Crown’s Jewels of Modernism are creations by Antoni Gaudí: The Basilica of the Sagrada Familia and The Park Güell, both included in our BARCELONA Essential Tour.
Our tours have different itineraries that takes you through the Barcelona of Gaudí, world capital of Modernisme. Including the city center Eixample District with its splendorous and glamorous Paseo de Gracia, where you can see the Casa Milà “La Pedrera” and Casa Batlló both buildings also by Antoni Gaudí, but also the Casa Ametller by Puig i Cadafalch and Casa Morera by Domenech i Montaner architect. Not to forget here, you can find the most luxurious shops and Restaurants in Barcelona.0