The great artistic riches of Catalonia need spaces that make it possible for works, artists and periods to be presented in an attractive and educational way: important national museums and foundations set up by the leading artists of the 20th century and themed collections are all worth visiting due to the quality of the works displayed and their innovative museological approaches.
Most of these museums organise guided visits, audio guides, activities for schoolchildren, evening visits, workshops, talks and concerts to increase the public's knowledge of their collections.
•·Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya (MNAC)
Housed in the Palau Nacional on Montjuïc. The MNAC collections cover a period of a thousand years of Catalan, Spanish and European art, spanning from the 11th to the 20th centuries.Its collection of Romanesque art is a unique display of mural painting unlike any other in the world due to the quantity and quality of the works and the concept of the exhibition, which partially reproduces the shape of the churches and hermitages from which the paintings were taken. The collection of Gothic art consists mainly of Catalan works from the 13th to the 15th centuries. In addition, it also displays the Renaissance and Baroque collection, the Cambó Bequest and the Thyssen- Bornemisza Collection, on deposit, as well as the Modern Art Collection (comprised of Modernist and Noucentista works from 1850 to 1930), among others.
•·Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA)
This is one of the most important centres of avantgarde art in the country. The collection of contemporary art includes pieces by Tàpies, Uclés, Francesc Torres, Saura and Oteiza. The building was designed by the architect Richard Meier. The interiors and the light entering through the galleries and huge skylights create a special feel. The opening of the MACBA was a decisive step in the urban regeneration of the Raval neighbourhood.
•·Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB)
Situated in the former Casa de la Caritat, which has been adapted as a museum. This is the first centre inEurope set up exclusively for the purpose of studying cities as driving forces for artistic, sociological and urban action. In addition to its programme of exhibitions, the CCCB is a venue for music, dance, courses, debates and conferences and organises urban itineraries.
•·La Pedrera (Casa Milà)
This building, which houses the Fundació Caixa de Catalunya in Barcelona, is one of the most interesting buildings in the city and one of Gaudí's most emblematic works. Particularly impressive are the wrought ironwork of the entrance, the two courtyards, the Espai Gaudí (in the loft and on the rooftop), and the period apartment. The foundation also has rooms for temporary exhibitions and an auditorium.
•·Fundació Joan Miró
A centre for study, exhibition and experimentation in contemporary art set up by Joan Miró. On display are works from all Miró's periods, as well as the collection of contemporary art entitled To Joan Miró, which includes works by Max Ernst, Tàpies, Duchamp, Matisse and others.
•·Fundació Antoni Tàpies
Created by the artist himself to promote the study and dissemination of modern and contemporary art, and housed in a building designed by the Modernista architect Domènech i Montaner. The foundation organises exhibitions of modern and contemporary art and cultural activities. The works held by the museum make up one of the most complete collections of work by Tàpies.
•Mies van der Rohe Pavelló
Located inMontjuïcPark, this emblematic building by the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe is a masterpiece of 20th century architecture.
•·Fundació Vila Casas
The Espai VolART exhibit space, located in a Modernist building, organises temporary exhibits of the Foundation's member artists and the Joan Brossa Documentary Collection, as well as events in the auditorium.
Costa del Maresme
•·Fundació Palau in Caldes d'Estrac.
Inaugurated in May of 2003, this museum exhibits and disseminates information on the art collection contributed by JosepPalau i Fabre (considered one of the most prestigious specialists on the life and works of Pablo Picasso, who was a personal friend of his), as well as his archives and library. The most remarkable part of the permanent collection is the hall dedicated entirely to Picasso, with some fifty works by the artist, including drawings, paintings, engravings and lithographs, among other things.
•·Museu d'Art de Girona, housed in the former Episcopal palace.
Works on display span the period from the Romanesque to the 20th century. The most impressive section is that devoted to medieval art: Romanesque frescos from churches in thePyrenees, Gothic altarpieces and the glassmaker's table (14th century) used during the making of the stained-glass windows in the cathedral. The exhibition in the space given over to the 20th century includes works by Martí Alsina, Vayreda and Rusiñol.
•· Fundació Museu del Cinema - Col·lecció Tomàs Mallol in Girona.
A journey through 500 years of the history of the image illustrated by one of the most renowned collections of cinematographic and pre-cinematographic equipment in Europe, comprising some 20,000 pieces, the oldest of which dates from the 17th century and the most recent from 1970. The museum'sInstitute ofStudies promotes research and specialist knowledge in the art and techniques of cinema and the image.
•·Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí.
Consists of three museums, all of them on theCosta Brava: The Castell de Púbol, the foundation's central offices. On display here are paintings and drawings that Dalí gave to Gala, as well as a collection of personal items. The Teatre-Museu Dalí in Figueres. A broad overview of Salvador Dalí's career. The entire museum was designed by the artist with the aim of immersing the visitor in the Dalinian world.The Casa-Museu Salvador Dalí in Portlligat. The painter's studio and the library and rooms of Dalí's home in Cadaqués.
•·Fundació Vila Casas.
This collection of contemporary art is exhibited at both the Palau Solterra in Torroella de Montgrí and the Espai d'Art Contemporani Can Mario in Palafrugell.
•·Museu de Montserrat
The museum has interesting collections of painting and modern sculpture (Picasso, Dalí, Monet, Casas, Anglada-Camarasa, etc.), old masters (Caravaggio, El Greco and others), precious metalwork and archaeology from the Bible Lands.
The museums of history are repositories of the material legacy left by our forebears, ranging from a prehistoric biface to a utilitarian car. Everyday life, means of transport, social life, maritime trade and different forms of spirituality are presented through period objects, tableaux and audiovisuals that use modern technology to increase our knowledge of the past.
•·Museu d'Història de Catalunya in Barcelona
Housed in the former general warehouses of theport ofBarcelona (1901), it is a fine example of port architecture. The permanent exhibition takes visitors on an interactive journey from prehistoric times to the present day, conceived in such a way as to reveal the social and human complexity ofCatalonia.
•·Museu Marítim de Barcelona
Housed in the royal shipyards dating from the 13th century. Its exhibitions illustrate the development of Catalan shipping over the course of history. Particularly worthy of note are the collection of 14th-century Mallorcan portolans (harbour descriptions) and the royal galley of John of Austria. The interactive exhibition entitled The Great Adventure of the Sea is especially interesting and uses replicas, tableaux, audiovisual and sensorial effects and original objects to describe important aspects of the country's maritime history, such as the conquest of the sea, the hard life aboard galleys, the history of the shipyards, the adventure of Catalan sailing ships in the 19th century, steam shipping and the underwater world.
•·Museu d'Història dels Jueus in Girona
The Centre Bonastruc ça Porta opened in the city's Jewish quarter some years ago. It works to recover Jewish history inCatalonia. The museum takes visitors on a journey through the life of the Jewish community between the 9th and the 15th centuries. It also holds the most important collection of Hebrew commemorative stones in the country.
•·Museu d'Història de la Ciutat de Girona
Housed in the former Capuchin Convent of Sant Antoni (18th century). The exhibition takes visitors through the history of Girona, from Antiquity to more recent times, including Romanisation, the Middle Ages, the modern era and the 20th century.
•·Museu d'Arqueologia de Catalunya (MAC)
Comprises the archaeological museums of: Barcelona (from the emergence of mankind to the Middle Ages); Girona (the museum occupies the cloister, church and upper cloister of the Monastery of Sant Pere de Galligants and displays material from Empúries, Roman inscriptions and sculptures, and collections of medieval epigraphs from Girona); the Graeco-Roman city of Empúries; the historical remains in Olèrdola (including remains from the Iron Age and the walls, and the Roman cistern and watchtower); the Iberian site at Ullastret (most of the remains to be seen at the site date from the final period of occupation of the settlement in the 3rd century BC); and the Centre d'Arqueologia Subaquàtica de Catalunya (CASC), which is responsible for inventorying, protecting, conserving, studying and raising awareness of the underwater archaeological heritage of Catalonia in coastal and inland waters.
•Museo Nacional Arqueológico en Tarragona (Tarragona).
Established during in first half of century XIX and is, therefore, oldest ofCataloniain its specialty. It is the centre of conservation and diffusion of material testimonies that illustrate the process of Romanization of theIberian Peninsula.
•·Museo de Arte y Historia (Reus). Works of gothic style can be contemplated between which it emphasizes a collection of gothic altarpieces, the altarpiece of the Prioral yi a painting collection of artists of the century XIX, between which it emphasizes those of Marià Fortuny, and pieces related to the elaboration of olive oil.
•·Museo Comarcal de la Conca de Barbera (Montblanc).
It presents/displays a chronological route by the history of the region, with the sections of prehistory, old, medieval world, time modern and contemporary time..
There are more than 300 museums inCataloniaspecialising in varied themes, including museums of the decorative arts, museums that focus on the lives of distinguished figures, and museums of science and technology, ethnology and the natural sciences. As well as the major themed museums, there is a network of smaller museums scattered around the country, all holding valuable, unusual and original collections.
•· Museu de la Ciència i de la Tècnica de Catalunya (mNACTEC) in Terrassa (Catalunya Central)
Housed in the Modernista building of the former Aymerich mill. On display are four permanent exhibitions: The Textile Mill: How did a steam-powered mill operate? How were yarn and fabric made? What was the everyday life of workers like? Homo Faber displays the progress in science and technology from the Neolithic Period to early industrialisation. Enérgeia presents a series of interactive experiments on energy. Transport: cars, lorries, planes and bicycles ever since the 19th century.
•·L'Aquàrium de Barcelona
Has three permanent exhibitions: 21 Aquariums. Large and spectacularly beautiful, presenting the three marine ecosystems (the marshes of the Delta del Ebro, a cove on the Costa Brava and an underwater cave in the Medas Islands). Each one represents a specific community of marine life in a space that recreates the habitat of the various species. The large central aquarium gives visitors the opportunity to stroll amongst sharks, rays and sunfish. Planet Water. Three sections focussing on deep-sea trenches, life in cold-water environments and life in fresh tropical waters. Living fossils, penguins, piranhas and alligators. Explore! Listen, touch, look and learn.
•·Museu del Joguet de Catalunya in Figueres (Costa Brava)
More than 4,000 toys from every period and provenance including 22 troops, Meccano, miniature theatres, cardboard animals and horses, kitchens, spinning tops, cars, trains, dolls, puppets and robots. The display also includes toys that once belonged to famous people such as Anna Maria and Salvador Dalí, Federico García Lorca, Quim Monzó, Joan Miró and Joan Brossa.
•·Museum of the Rural Life (Espluga de Francolí). In this museum, that occupies the pairal house of the Carulla family, tools, objects, furniture, dresses, - altogether giving an insight in living in ruralCatalonia.
•· BARCELONA AQUARIUM
moll d'Espanya del Port Vell, s/n.
tel. 932 217 474
fax 932 219 226
•·SCIENCE AND TECHNIQUE MUSEUM OF CATALONIA (MNACTEC)
rbla. d'Ègara, 270.
08221 Terrassa (Catalunya Central)
tel. (+34) 937 368 966
fax (+34) 937 800 192
•·MUSEU DEL JOGUET DE CATALUNYA
tel. (+ 34) 972 504 585
•·MUSEU DE LES ARTS DECORATIVES
tel. (+ 34) 932 805 024
•·MUSEU TÈXTIL I DE LA INDUMENTÀRIA
tel. (+ 34) 933 197 603
•MUSEU DE CERÀMICA
tel. (+ 34) 932 805 024
•·MUSEU DE ZOOLOGIA
tel. (+ 34) 933 196 912
•· MUSEU DE GEOLOGIA
tel. (+ 34) 933 196 912
tel. (+ 34) 932 126 050
•·MUSEU DE CERA DE BARCELONA
tel. (+ 34) 933 172 649
•· MUSEU ROMÀNTIC CAN PAPIOL
tel. (+ 34) 938 930 382
•·MUSEU DEL FUTBOL CLUB BARCELONA
tel. (+ 34) 934 963 600
•· MUSEU COMARCAL DE LA GARROTXA
tel. (+ 34) 972 279 130
•·MUSEU DE L'EMPORDÀ
tel. (+ 34) 972 502 305
•·MUSEU ETNOLÒGIC DEL MONTSENY - LA GABELLA
tel. (+ 34) 972 860 908
•MUSEU DE LA PESCA
tel. (+ 34) 972 600 424
•·MUSEU COMARCAL DEL MONTSIÀ
tel. (+ 34) 977 702 954
•·MUSEU DE L'AIGUA DE LLEIDA
tel. (+ 34) 973 211 992
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