In this first stage, the catalogue focuses on the modern and contemporary architecture designed and built between 1832 –year of construction of the first industrial chimney in Barcelona that we establish as the beginning of modernity– until today.
The project is born to make the architecture more accessible both to professionals and to the citizens through a website that is going to be updated and extended. Contemporary works of greater general interest will be incorporated, always with a necessary historical perspective, while gradually adding works from our past, with the ambitious objective of understanding a greater documented period.
The collection feeds from multiple sources, mainly from the generosity of architectural and photographic studios, as well as the large amount of excellent historical and reference editorial projects, such as architectural guides, magazines, monographs and other publications. It also takes into consideration all the reference sources from the various branches and associated entities with the COAC and other collaborating entities related to the architectural and design fields, in its maximum spectrum.
Special mention should be made of the incorporation of vast documentation from the COAC Historical Archive which, thanks to its documental richness, provides a large amount of valuable –and in some cases unpublished– graphic documentation.
The rigour and criteria for selection of the works has been stablished by a Documental Commission, formed by the COAC’s Culture Spokesperson, the director of the COAC Historical Archive, the directors of the COAC Digital Archive, and professionals and other external experts from all the territorial sections that look after to offer a transversal view of the current and past architectural landscape around the territory.
The determination of this project is to become the largest digital collection about Catalan architecture; a key tool of exemplar information and documentation about architecture, which turns into a local and international referent, for the way to explain and show the architectural heritage of a territory.
We kindly invite you to help us improve the dissemination of Catalan architecture through this space. Here you can propose works and provide or amend information on authors, photographers and their work, along with adding comments. The Documentary Commission will analyze all data. Please do only fill in the fields you deem necessary to add or amend the information.
The Arxiu Històric del Col·legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya is one of the most important documentation centers in Europe, which houses the professional collections of more than 180 architects whose work is fundamental to understanding the history of Catalan architecture. By filling this form, you can request digital copies of the documents for which the Arxiu Històric del Col·legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya manages the exploitation of the author's rights, as well as those in the public domain. Once the application has been made, the Arxiu Històric del Col·legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya will send you an approximate budget, which varies in terms of each use and purpose.
The project won a restricted competition called by Banca Catalana, and the decisive element of this choice was undoubtedly the solution of the façade. Because it would be a representative building located on one of the most emblematic promenades in the city, the image that the building had to offer was involved with the architecture of the environment and with the demands of the institution. Formed by a combination of glass locks and paraboloid-shaped plastic pieces, the façade builds a strictly two-dimensional plan that reflects all the aesthetic potential required. Tous and Fargas innovate the concept of the façade, built with pieces that are assembled as a device that closes the building like the fairing of a car. They later applied the same criteria in other office buildings, offering many variants. It is also worth noting the structural solution, reduced to a cantilevered structure that leaves a single row of pillars, which in turn leave the large beams that cross the different floors visible.
Building between partitions that follows the guidelines set by Hispano Olivetti and Noticiero Universal to contextualise the volume and radicalise the use of technology. One of the most notable elements of the project is the introduction of trusses on the first floor that lower the building and free the entire ground floor of pillars. The street space flows through a system of half levels that lead to the customer service windows in the back. The rest of the floors are variable and the only element that remains stable is the core of vertical communications.
The two façades are another of the variable elements of the project, since they are designed as a grid of opaque and transparent elements that can be exchanged with each other, depending on changes in the interior layout. They are made up of bands of horizontal windows, from floor to ceiling, which are divided into vertical modules. Some of these modules are made of reflective glass and others are made of plastic with hyperboloid shapes, which are randomly grouped in a 50% proportion. The result is a dynamic façade that reinforces the movement of the leaves of the trees on Passeig de Gràcia.