Barcelona Photoblog: montjuic
Showing posts with label montjuic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label montjuic. Show all posts

October 10, 2007

Olympic Stadium on Montjuic Hill: An Inside View

Olympic Stadium on Montjuic Hill: An Inside View [enlarge]

The Olympic Stadium, where Barcelona 1992 Games famous opening and closing ceremonies took place is part of the Olympic Ring that is also made up of Palau Sant Jordi, the National Institute of Physical Education, Picornell swimming pools, a new baseball field, another pool, an enormous square and Santiago Calatrava's telecommunications tower. These facilities are on Montjuic hill that is topped by Montjuic castle, an old fortress facing the entrance to Barcelona port. Check my new Google Map of Barcelona at the bottom of the page to have a general view of the mountain.

Suggested links from fellow bloggers:

  1. Kansas City Daily Photo by Waldo Oiseau

October 03, 2007

Montjuic Fountains: The Magic Show

Montjuic Fountains: The Magic Show [enlarge]

Watching the iridescent colors of Montjuic fountains at dusk can be one of the most relaxing things to do in Barcelona. However, before you go, make sure you know if some important event is going on since it is possible that the fountains are dry when you get there. On this occasion, I was invited to visit Sonimagfoto, a photography related event held in Barcelona Fair venues (my thanks to Barcelona Photobloggers guys who were exhibitors promoting Barcelona bloggers' community). On walking out of the exhibition area I stumbled upon the beauty of the fountains with Palau de la Merce and MNAC in the background. My first thought was "hey there's water in the fountain" then I stood in the middle of the avenue where there's this narrow traffic sign painted on the road about to steps wide and took some shots. It's a little bit noisy but worth showing.

Previous related posts: Fountains of Montjuic, Barcelona Skyline: Magic Mountain of Montjuic, Montjuic Fountain (BW)

Funny and popular today: Elecam. A webcam with a privileged view of...?

Interesting: Rotten Neighbors (are you planning to move? check in advance if your neighbors are not as cool as you expect - you can even add yours to the database!)

September 04, 2007

Palau Sant Jordi Sports Center and Concert Hall in Montjuic, Barcelona

Palau Sant Jordi Sports Center and Concert Hall in Montjuic, Barcelona [enlarge]

Palau Sant Jordi, not far away from the tower in yesterday's post (yes, that white tip is not on the roof) is a totally different building both in design and functionality. This time we are facing a wide almost square building (see the Palau Sant Jordi on Google Earth) that in spite of looking big standing at the entrance, seems to be terribly flat from the distance as proportions are deceiptful in the enormous square of the Olympic ring on Montjuic Hill (check Palau Sant Jordi in an old post to see what I mean). Palau Sant Jordi was meant to be a sports center and as such was inaugurated in 1992 for the Olympic Games in Barcelona. Nevertheless, designers were wise enough to conceive the facilities as a multiuse space that can shift from a skating rink to a tennis court, a swimming tank, a basketball court and what's best, an important concert hall where famous bands and singers have performed. The building was designed by the Japanese architect Arata Isozaki & Associates. Find out about what other important works by Arata Isozaki here: Arata Isozaki & Associates via Emporis.

September 03, 2007

Santiago Calatrava's Montjuic Communications Tower, Barcelona

Santiago Calatrava's Communications Tower, Barcelona

This is Santiago Calatrava's Communications Tower standing against the sun in the middle of the big square at the Olympic Ring on Montjuic Hill. The structure is located near Palau Sant Jordi sports center, Picornell swimming pools and the Olympic Stadium. 

When you think of this artist, Calatrava, you think about impossible structures of steel and glass that resemble skeletons, carcasses with exposed ribs, sails, etc. In this case we are just talking about a 136 meter high tower that was meant only for telecommunications. But still it doesn't look like one of those horrible antennas full of dishes. It is weird I know but elegant at the same time. 

The tower's white steel structure with the tip tapering like a flame, does recall the Olympic torch or perhaps the jet engine of some extraterrestrial airship and oddly enough it doesn't stand in the way, maybe because of the line of nearby columns illuminated at night or the immensity of the square that evokes Soviet or Maoist grandiloquent and megalomaniac architecture. I digress. 

Some brief facts about Calatrava then: Born on July 28, 1951 in Valencia, Spain, he studied architecture in the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura (Valencia) and later on took post-graduate courses in civil engineering in Zurich. His work is well known all over the world so I will not deal with the many projects in his prolific career that you can consult in the following useful links:

August 08, 2007

Cable Car at Montjuic

Cable Car at Montjuic [enlarge]

A wonderful view of the cable car at Montjuic under the sunny late afternoon hours

July 18, 2007

Statue of Naked Woman At Montjuic Castle in Barcelona

Statue of Naked Woman Dedicated to Gaspar_de_Portola at Montjuic Castle in Barcelona

On top of Montjuic mountain from where you have a privileged view of Barcelona there is a fortress as it is common at the entrance of bays. It is the Montjuic castle which I will deal with on some other occasion since it doesn't show in the picture. There is an esplanade with some huge canons and in the middle of this heavy artillery you come across a statue of a naked woman which honors the memory of Gaspar de Portolà the first California governor. Besides the weapons museum which is inside the castle and the canons all the rest around the statue (as you can see in the background), the view, the cleaner atmosphere and the sea breeze (that you don't see but it is easy to imagine) creates a special sense of bliss which is highly recommended after a hard day's walk downtown. I have to point out that my colleague Valery of BCN Daily and Trujillo had published this statue not long ago and we overlapped without me knowing it, that's good cause now you can enjoy the same place twice. Please visit his site to check his work too.

July 11, 2007

Onboard Montjuic Cable Cars: A Privileged Panoramic View of Barcelona

Onboard the Barcelona Teleferic or Cablecar of Montjuic: A Privileged Panoramic View [enlarge]

A polarized panoramic view of Barcelona city from behind the protective cover of the new cable cars or teleferic cabins in Montjuic mountain, Barcelona. As you know this service has been available for years but old semi covered scary cabins have been replaced by the ones in the image. Now we have a whole brand new non-stop chain of cable cars conditioned for all kinds of weather, with all guarantees of security and more freedom of movement with a little less visibility. It's a pity that pictures aren't as perfect as could be considering the fair skies and the altitude but I think the polarized methacrylate cover is just a minor annoyance for photographers or tourists. The city in all its splendor lies at our feet and we suddenly seem to be flying as in some sort of amusement park attraction or soaring with a delta wing, hmm...more or less. Price is higher now so that keeps us locals away for the moment. I think the ride is worth trying though, at least once. Check Montjuic cable car fares here. A panoramic picture of cable cars in Montjuic before renewal. A second opinion here. The place on a map. And finally a Google Earth satellite view of Montjuic Castle with cable car route and Barcelona port.

May 16, 2007

Fountains of Montjuic in Barcelona. A Winter Photograph

Fountains of Montjuic in Barcelona. A Winter Photograph

This is a winter photograph I have picked up from Barcelona Photoblog archives. It depicts a line of small dry fountains as I am walking down the stairs on my way to Plaza España from Fira de Barcelona venues. In fact, the real Montjuic fountains, those that are illuminated to the beat of the music every September 24th during La Mercè celebrations are the ones you see in the roundabout. But these modest ones always call my attention and now after so much time I notice again the non-polluted light of the winter sun illuminating that perfect diagonal that I had accidentally overlooked in my previous daily publishing. For a bird's eye view of the place why don't you take a look at this Google Earth snap.

March 24, 2007

Mini Classic Cars: A Car Entrepreneur's Dream

Classic Cars at Auto Retro Barcelona - mini

A '76 BL MINI 1000 MK-III, I believe, one of the famous mini classic car variants that remind me of Mr. Bean's mini. I recall those hilarious scenes where Mr Bean locked the car doors with a padlock or when he bumped into the same old rickety car to park his Austin mini and specially the episode about the death of his car. 

Minis have changed a lot over the years, and now you can even design your own at will (see Mini) but I still prefer vintage cars. 

This is a picture from my archives. It was taken at Auto Retro Barcelona (check Google labels below for more or see my Classic cars set at Flickr), a classic car exhibition at Fira de Barcelona in Montjuic. 

It was a delight to see these old timers so close and I stayed in the parking lot shooting. It was an event for classic car enthusiasts and dealers so I was thinking about starting a classic car loan company (collector car financing is becoming a big business nowadays) but suddenly I found out that the entrance fee to the venue was not affordable so not more dreams about being a car entrepreneur!

February 11, 2007

Ferrer i Guardia Monument in Montjuic

Francisco Ferrer i Guardia statue in Montjuic, Barcelona

This is a monument in honor of Francisco Ferrer i Guardia in Montjuic. It is one of the many sculptures scattered around these mountain paths. Francisco Ferrer i Guardia was one of those controverted characters in Catalan history. He was an anarchist and a teacher, arrested and executed without any proof by firing squad at Montjuic Fortress in Barcelona in October 13, 1909. 

Born in Alella, Catalonia, in 1859 from a Catholic family, he was known for his progressive and republican ideas and later on for his anarchist actions. Nonetheless he ended up creating what was known as Modern School in which by means of libertarian pedagogy pupils were taught in a different way of thinking that promoted reflection and rebellion against religious order. It was for this reason that his school was deemed a source of subversion and terrorism and although it was eventually closed he managed, after months in jail, to be acquitted and released. 

But his good fortune came to an end in 1909 when the Church falsely accused him of instigating a rebellion which led to attacks to convents and churches during the revolutionary events of the "Tragic Week" in Barcelona. King Alfonso XIII did not pardon him and Ferrer i Guardia was put to death by a firing squad in the Santa Amalia pit in the prison of Montjuic castle. 

This sculpture is a replica of an original in Brussels. Barcelona townhall, right after the II Republic in Spain, solicited that the Belgians sent the statue, to which they opposed in 1931. It was agreed then to make a copy and it wasn't till 1990 that such petition was finally carried out.

February 10, 2007

Barcelona Skyline: Magic Fountains of Montjuic

Barcelona Skyline: Magic Fountains of Montjuic
© All Rights Reserved

This is what you can see from the top of the stairs, just next to the entrance to MNAC (National Art Museum of Catalonia). You don't see it but I am surrounded by tourists at the moment as this is a must see spot in Barcelona. The nearest underground station is Plaza Espanya named after the square right behind those two brick color towers. They act as the entrance to Barcelona Fair made up of a series of venues on both sides of the central walk. It was on this vast area where famous Barcelona International Exhibition took place in 1929. On the right hand side where the big red poster is, you see old Las Arenas bull ring undergoing a profound transformation into a top design leisure center. Notice the big cranes? A big cupola must go on top after they raised the whole coliseum above the ground with enormous jacks and metalic props!. In the foreground, the Magic Fountains of Montjuic, usually as dry as the Sahara desert but totally illuminated in September during the celebrations in honor of the patroness of the city, La Mercé. Check this Youtube video of Montjuic Magic Fountains too! Click on my Montjuic blogger label below to find out more about interesting places nearby. Nice weekend! Bon Weekend! Schönest wochenende!

December 28, 2006

Bronze Sculpture of Lady Near MNAC

Bronze Sculpture of Lady Near MNAC
© All Rights Reserved

Some months ago I posted a picture of this sculpture taken from a different angle and including MNAC building in the background. The woman figure in bronze is such beautiful piece that I thought I should give you a different approach, this time using some HDR treatment. As I am not a pro it has a lot of imperfections but I like the result. If you click on label "bronze" you will be able to see both posts together (at least for now). Happy New Year everyone!

December 11, 2006

Auto Retro Barcelona: Antique Cars and Motorcycles Exhibition

Classic Cars at Auto Retro Barcelona - Citroen

Auto Retro Barcelona (2006) came to an end after four days of exhibition in the Fira de Barcelona venue.

I am not a big fan of classic cars or motorbikes, at least not from the point of view of engines, value and so on. What I do like is the aesthetic aspect of these collector's exhibits, especially when you can capture them in your pictures.

Admission fees were a little above my standards (not being a fan and all) so I wandered about the esplanades at the entrance where improvised parking lots lodged some beauties you could easily snap. This was the case of this black Citroën. I've had a hard time identifying the brand and finding a proper link so I leave it up to you to suggest.

Fortunately, it appeared unexpectedly driving down the access road and against the marvelous Palau Nacional building in the background where MNAC (National Art Museum of Catalonia) is.

If you want to know about the history behind Fira de Barcelona i.e. the International Exhibition of 1929 please check my previous posts about this topic.

November 27, 2006

Calatrava Tower at Olympic Ring in Montjuic, Barcelona

Calatrava Tower, Olympic Ring

This sunday we went out for a walk and some fresh air after recent events I mentioned a couple of posts before. We climbed the mountain of Montjuic to visit the Olympic Ring one more time. I took some new pictures of the big squares and particularly the Calatrava Telecommunications Tower you can appreciate on the left and featured some months ago here.

September 20, 2006

Monjuic Magic Fountains and Plaza España: Panoramic View of Barcelona

Plaza España as seen from MNAC in Montjuic Barcelona

This panoramic view of Monjuic Magic Fountains and Plaza España is the perfect match to what you can see from Sacré-Coeur basilica in Montmartre, Paris or at least I got that impression when I visited this country back in August. Remember yesterday's post? Well, this time you take the elevators or climb up the stairs all the way up and rest for a while at the entrance of National Museum of Art of Catalonia (MNAC). You will enjoy the architecture of Fira de Barcelona from there, or maybe you just sit and relax thinking about going back to the hotel for lunch, but don't forget to pick up your camera and freeze some Barcelona images to show your friends. This place is a must see, and behind the museum you have a full range of important places to visit. Remember that every Sept. 24th we celebrate La Mercè (patroness of Barcelona) just in front of these stairs, and that Montjuic Magic Fountains are fully illuminated for the occasion, not just with spotlights but by the light of a huge fireworks exhibition.

Google Maps Image of Barcelona: Plaza España, Montjuic Magic Fountains, Fira de Barcelona, MNAC and Olympic Ring

September 19, 2006

Fountains at Montjuic: Passeig de Les Cascades in Barcelona

Fountains and Staircase at Montjuic in Barcelona, Spain

Once you take the elevators and get just below MNAC and Palau Nacional, follow the Passeig de les Cascades, that is, the path to your right or left and you will reach these recently restored staircases adorned with beautiful fountains and blue tiles hidden under the shadow of the trees. You will be really walking along the historic Eix dels Muntanyans (Mountaineers Axis or Way) built during the 1929 Barcelona International Exhibition and the first transversal avenue communicating palaces located East with western areas of the park and Poble Espanyol. So, where were we?, oh yes, I remember now, if you choose the left path, and you keep on going till the end you descend to carrer de Lleida where Teatre Lluire is (a coming post). Taking the opposite direction will lead you up to Montjuic Olympic Ring. Here is a wider picture including some more people. It was hard to decide which one to post so I included three photos. The last one, is taken from the distance where you can better appreciate the staircase.

Aerial Picture of Fountains at Montjuic in Barcelona, Spain.

If you are traveling to Barcelona soon or you are already in the city, try this fantastic list of Popular Things to Do in Barcelona provided by Virtual Tourist. Anything from Casa Mila to Barri Gotic or from Joan Miro to Nou Camp, you name it, concise and image illustrated.

September 17, 2006

Panoramic View of Barcelona from Montjuic

Panoramic view of Barcelona from Montjuic

When in Barcelona do as the Barcelonians do: go, climb Montjuic mountain and take a look at the city from El Mirador del Alcalde or the Castle of Montjuic. If you are lucky and you pick up a bright fine day like this you surely won't regret it. That's Columbus monument in the middle (right under the helicopter) and Hotel Arts to your right. To the left, in the background, the omnipresent Agbar tower.

September 14, 2006

Tower at Barcelona Fair Venue near Montjuic

Tower at Barcelona Fair Venues

This small tower is part of Fira de Barcelona (Barcelona Fair) venue. Easily spotted at the foot of the elevators leading to MNAC (National Art Museum of Catalonia) in the Palau Nacional, these beautiful towers are on almost every corner of the palaces on each side of the staircase. If you climb up till the museum you will appreciate the little turrets better and enjoy a panoramic view of Barcelona.

The Fira of Barcelona compound exists thanks to the celebration of 1929 International Exposition (World's Fair) at the slope of Montjuic hill. From that time are: Palau Nacional, the famous Font Màgica fountains full of colors and firecrackers during La Mercé celebrations (September 24th), Mies Van der Rohe Pavilion (rebuilt), the Olympic Stadium (remodeled) or Poble Espanyol. Here is another picture of a different tower.

May 11, 2006

Barcelona Sculptures: A Stroll in Montjuic

Barcelona Sculptures: A Stroll in Montjuic

If you are an art lover, specially if you appreciate sculptures go for a stroll in Montjuic. You have several ways of access as it is a mountain and statues are scattered all over the place. Today I show you this skinny man obviously an athlete, under the shadow of a tree near Palau de la Mercè and not very far from Palau Sant Jordi. I like the fragile but agile complexion of the body, almost feline emulating the shape of the spires in the background.
See Sculpture near Palau de la Mercè on a Google Earth Map
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