Gaudí’s piece from the heritage of the UB, exhibited in MNAC

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The drain cover in its original site.The drain cover in its original site.


The University of Barcelona has ceded a drain cover from the Gaudí Pavilions to be part of the exhibition "(Re)discovering Gaudí" , inaugurated in MNAC, dedicated to the great architect. This is a drain cover for a sink, made of limestone, which dates from 1884. During the loan period, the piece has been replaced by one made of steel with the upper side engraved with the original image.

This piece was in the Pavilions of Finca Güell, which is the first great large project Gaudí made for his patron, Eusebi Güell, built between 1884 and 1887, and located in Av. Pedralbes, 15. This work consisted on designing the gardens of the summer palace -the current Palau Reial (Royal Palace)-, building the entrance doors across the perimeter and the two access pavilions, for the doorman and the stables.

The exhibition will be available in MNAC until March 6, 2022, and will then be moved to the Orsay and l’Orangerie Museums in Paris, where it will be available from April 11 to July 24. The exhibition has been commissioned by Juan José Lahuerta, lecturer of History of Art and Architecture at the Barcelona School of Architecture (ETSAB) of the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC), and director of the Gaudí Chair at ETSAB. The Paris exhibition will count on Isabelle’s Morin Loutrel commission, curator in chief of the architecture collections in Musé d’Orsay, and Elise Dubreuil, curator of decorative art collections of the same museum.

The exhibition, narrated with the voice of the actor Josep M. Pou, offers a new view of the artist as a unique figure, but not isolated, and places Gaudí’s works in its local and international context. The objective is to create a dialectic between Gaudí’s work and works by other contemporary creators, in the fields of design, architecture, arts and culture in general. It evokes the social, political and economic environment of the late 19th century and early 20t century Barcelona, in which Gaudí is one of the main characters.

Eusebi Güell’s heirs ceded a part of the villa, located in the upper side of the Avinguda Diagonal, to Spain, in order to turn it into a royal residency. In 1958, an important part of the property near Palau Reial was bought to build a new university town. The Pavilions were declared historical-artistic monument of national interest in 1969. Now, under an agreement between the University of Barcelona and the Barcelona City Council, the University has ceded the Pavilions of Finca Güell to the Municipal Institute of Urban Landscape and Quality of Life (IMPUiQV) for a 10-year period (2015-2024).