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Museums in Barcelona

Museums in Barcelona

Art Galleries and museums in Barcelona

Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya

The National Art Museum of Catalonia is located in the Palau Nacional (National Palace) on the Montjuïc hill. This construction was built between 1926 and 1929 for the International Exposition (1929) and boasts a size of 32.000 m². It was designed in neo-renaissance and classic style by Eugenio Cendoya and Enric Catà. Once the International Exposition finished, the Palau Nacional made into the National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC).


The Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya is maybe the most important of the city because its exhibition covers the period from Romanesque to present Catalan art. For example, the museum contains the original wall paintings from Sant Climent de Taüll, one of the nine Romanesque churches of Vall de Boí which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. This fresco is considered the symbol of Catalan Romanesque.

On the other hand, this museum offers the visitor works of art from well-known painters such as Giovanni Battista, Francisco de Zurbaran, Diego Velázquez, Francisco de Goya, Fra Angelico and José de Ribera. Many works from these artists have been loaned from other museums and collectors like Francisco Cambó y Batlle, Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza and the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum of Madrid.

The art from the XIX and XX Century has also a very important space in the National Art Museum of Catalonia due to the museum having a very special exhibition of works from Catalan modernism such as paintings from Fortuny, Gaudí and Salvador Dalí. However, more recently the museum has incorporated some works of Picasso, including the famous painting "Woman in Hat and Fur Collar (Marie-Thérèse Walter)".


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Museu Picasso

Located in Montcada Street, Museo Picasso is another indispensable museum of Barcelona. However, this street is also very famous because of the large medieval palaces which were built here between 13th and 15th Century and remodelled in 18th Century. In fact, the Picasso Museum is placed in five different palaces on this historic street of the city: Aguilar Palace, Baró de Castellet Palace, Meca Palace, Casa Mauri and Finestres Palace. All of the palaces are gothic and have a central courtyard giving you a good excuse to visit this museum.

The permanent exhibition is composed by 4.251 works of Pablo Picasso including paintings, sculptures and engravings. One of the most important symbols that the museum shows is the series “Las Meninas”: 58 paintings which Picasso painted in 1957 recreating several times the original “Las Meninas” by Diego Velázquez (exhibited in the Prado Museum of Madrid). This important series belongs to cubism school.


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Fundació Joan Miró

Since 1973, the very modern building situated in the upper part of the Montjuïc Park has housed the Fundació Joan Miró. This museum is one of the most three visited of Barcelona and contains several pieces of Miró’s work, from paintings, sculptures and drawings to ceramics and textiles. However, you can also contemplate works of other artists as it is a very special exhibition of over than 14.000 pieces.


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Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona

The Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art is located in El Raval neighbourhood. Apart from its incredible exhibition, focused on the second half of 20th Century painting, the white building where the museum is placed is absolutely huge and extraordinary. It was designed by Richard Meier, an American abstract architect who has won different architecture awards.

The Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona contains works by Catalan, Spanish and international artists. The exhibition has more than 5.000 pieces of contemporary art, highlighting works of European pop, the vanguards of the 50s & 60s and minimalist sculpture of the 80s. This museum, located in the heart of El Raval, is a must for art and architecture lovers!


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If you are interested by art and museums and you plan to visit Madrid, we recommend you visit our section with Madrid's top museums


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