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Essential museums, monuments, walks, talks and tours in Barcelona
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What's on in Barcelona
It's not just about Sónar and Primavera Sound. For an unforgettable year of music, art and cultural experiences, follow Time Out's guide to festivals and events. The coming months promise an endless array of events showcasing the best in Catalan and international culture - from hip hop and documentary filmmaking to religious and traditional celebrations. Plan your year here.
This week and beyond
DJ Ferdiyei's gay indie party is banking on filling Apolo's smaller hall, thanks to the day-after holiday. Tonight's session will feature a performance by Molt Riquet, a pair of two Andalusians living in Barcelona who offer up a show where they blend their passion for music and entertainment. Dressed up for the occasion, they'll be performing tracks with more than just suggestive titles.
With 'Just davant nostre' ('Before our eyes'), the MACBA delves into the goings-on in the Mediterranean area of north Africa and the Middle East, and the emergence of new forms of civil society in the context of the Arab world. The project centres on the Rif mountains, where there has been an experience exchange between artists and the people of the Maghreb. This experience has led to changes in artistic processes in relation to their context, and to the reflection on the notion of authorship, the conditions of creating a work of art, and its registration within the institution of the museum and within history.
- Rated as: 4/5
'Iceberg. Invisible Reality' offers a journey through a world of appearances that invite visitors to reflect on the images and their partial and selective condition of reality. Nineteen works by Jeff Wall, Tacita Dean, Rodney Graham, Douglas Gordon, Pierre Huyghe, Ignasi Aballí, Stan Douglas, and Dora García, among others, present the paradox, so common in the world today, of confusing reality and appearances.
- Rated as: 4/5
I work the street. Joan Colom, photographs 1957-2010. 'I work street. With my photographs I try to be a kind of notary of an era.' With this statement the nonagenarian Joan Colom (Barcelona, 1921) defines his penchant for flashing into the history of Catalan creativity: the photo essay.Colom began his career in photography soon after he married in 1957, and left it in 1964. In the 1980s, with the return of Catalan self-government and its own cultural base, Colom was made into an institution and filed in the drawer of the generation of 'new art', along with with Ricard Terre, Xavier Miserachs and Ramon Masats.Colom took up photography again in the 1990s, but we knew almost nothing about this period of his work. In 2012 he gave his archives to the MNAC, and now this museum that preserves thousand years of Catalan artistic heritage, after processing and studying over a thousand pieces, brings us a major retrospective exhibition that unveils all of Colom's work for the first time, including unpublished images and historical and contextual interpretations of his work.That said, we have to say that the exhibition is perhaps too extensive. There are too many photos, some too similar to others, while it's one thing in a publication – we're waiting for the catalogue – it can be detrimental if all the photos are crowded onto walls and jammed into corridors. Will we appreciate Colom's work more if we see 500 good photos instead of 200? It's taking things to an extreme if, instead of the
- Rated as: 4/5
At the age of 77, Le Corbusier went for a swim in the Mediterranean and was swallowed by the sea. It was the summer of 1965, and he'd already spent more than six decades fighting with the landscape. Although he was born in Switzerland, or perhaps because he was born in the geographic centre of Swiss timing, he became a poetic machinist who produced housing accommodation (houses and flats), he conceived enormous cities redrawing the landscape from an airplane, and he transformed reinforced concrete into the dominant material of the modern age.You can see this, and much more, in the CaixaForum, itself a modernist building apparently far removed from the theories drawn by the man born Charles-Édouard Jeanneret-Gris (La Chaux-de-Fonds, 1887 – Roquebrune-Cap- Martin, 1965) and widely known by the pseudonym Le Corbusier. 'An Atlas of Modern Landscapes', the subtitle of the exhibition, is the most comprehensive ever seen, and will explain the intention of the curator, Jean-Louis Cohen: architecture, which was less appreciated when engineering got in touch with its creative side, searches for a new space in the urban universe and ends up rooting itself in line with the saying taken from the Goya painting, 'the sleep of reason produces monsters'.Le Corbusier, as can be seen through objects, models, photographs, drawings, installations and various documents, was a multifaceted creator. His ideology was above the mainstream: he worked for Soviet communists, Italian fascists, South Ameri
- Rated as: 3/5
Architecture exhibitions that are sparse on models don't exactly have 'em queueing up around the block. Not to make tedious comparisons between the Le Corbusier exhibition at the CaixaForum and this one from Grup R showing in the MACBA, but, despite a common base of the epic genre of modernity and a certain chronological coexistence, the former is about the genesis of a universal movement, while the latter has to do with a group of young people who got together to get control of the framework of Catalan cultural power.Under a single letter, two generations, one born in 1913 and the other in 1925, bring back the modern movement after the parentheses of the Civil War. They also take the power away from the Architects Association, FAD and wherever else they need to, according to talented designer Ricard Giralt Miracle and photographs by Català Roca. But, of course, we know what they say about apples and oranges. In the exhibition, the black and white levels the playing field ... historical contribution or blurred lines?
This exhibition that the Fundació Antoni Tàpies is dedicating to Allan Kaprow (Atlantic City, New Jersey, 1927 – Encinitas, California, 2006) recovers some of the issues the artist worked on throughout his career, via a series of happenings and activities (the name he gave to happenings from the late 1960s, when his work became more intimate) that reclaim its contemporary relevance.