I haven’t yet had the pleasure of visiting all 55 museums in Barcelona, but I’ve starting knocking off some of the big ones. I first tended towards museums that satisfied my love for all things Gaudi, and my interest in the Modernism movement in Barcelona (apparent throughout the city in various displays of Catalan architecture). Eventually, I ventured from the ‘usual suspects’, giving other styles and artists a chance, which proved to be a worthwhile venture! Here are a few of my favorite museums!
Also know as La Pedera (the stone quarry), this modernist Gaudi masterpiece has received recognition for its artistic uniqueness.
Casa Mila’s gorgeous, stone curves greet you from the busy street of Passeig de Gracia, standing out from the rest of the buildings. For around 20 Euros, you can explore the inside of the house, taking you through the architectural design process from bottom to top (literally). You end on the rooftop terrace among spiraling stone structures and amazingly unique chimneys.
We chose to explore the house by night for a chance to see live jazz on the roof (available on Fridays during summer months).
This was an incredible treat. After exploring the house, which was enhanced with creative projection and lighting effects, we enjoyed the roof with a glass of champagne and an impressive string quartet. Guaranteed to be a magical night… Not to be missed!
Also on Passeig de Gracia, you won’t be able to miss the colorful mosaic tiling and renowned style of this beautiful Gaudi design.
21 Euros to explore the interior of the house, and well worth it if you ask me. Work your way up a spiraling staircase in the center to visit each charming room. I was entranced by the swirling ceilings, unique columns, and colorful stained glass designs.
Your visit ends on an incredible rooftop. It’s a bit smaller than Casa Mila’s terrace, but still with a colorful charm that is uniquely Gaudi.
There is also a visual tour available for 3 additional Euros. You are provided with a tablet that can be looked through during your tour, providing visuals of what the interior looked like, fully furnished, when it was built in 1877.
I’ve always disliked Picasso. No matter how hard I try to appreciate Cubism, or abstract art in general, I just can’t wrap my head around it enough to enjoy. Part of me has always wondered if such artists were secretly laughing at the people who purchased their ‘art’… “Can you believe I sold this for millions?! I had my 5 year old daughter paint it!”
Despite this distaste, I passed the beautiful building housing his extensive collection daily while living in El Born, and finally decided to fork over the 12 Euros for a proper visit.
The fact that I learned to love Picasso after years of reluctance was astonishing to me. The museum’s layout, which leads you from his earliest work (from when he was as young as 10 years old!) to his later pieces, paints a picture of his truly incredible talent.
Picasso’s early work was mostly realism, and filled with family portraits. Proof to me that he is indeed a talented artist! As he grew older, and was living in Barcelona, it seems he began feeling an Impressionist vibe – my favorite examples in his collection.
As the years went by, as seen on our tour, his work moved towards the Abstract and Cubist styles he’s most know for. “I finally understand!” I thought. When you’ve been painting your whole life, and painting often, you must eventually get bored. Thousands of paintings later, you begin to find inspiration and influence in a unique depiction of the world. You begin reaching further and further to express your creative mind and continue to do what you love. Touche Picasso. I get it. I even like it.