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Historical Archive which, thanks to its documental richness, provides a large amount of valuable –and in some cases unpublished– graphic documentation.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.
Located in the Eixample district, the Cerdà Houses are three very similar buildings that make up three of the four chamfers of the intersection between Consell de Cent and Roger de Llúria Streets. They are buildings between homes that share the same urban guidelines as well as constructive solutions.
These are buildings that meet quite precisely the parameters proposed by Ildefons Cerdà for the Eixample; buildable depths of around ten metres and heights between four and five floors. Compositionally, they all present very regular geometries that enhance the vertical component both in the axes and in the proportions of the windows. The construction solutions are solid and austere, and the decorations are simple, only offering visual richness with the presence of sgraffitos on the street façades.
The three buildings are equivalent in all respects. Two of them, numbers 340 and 371 of Consell de Cent, are identical and only differ from the third by the material of the railings and the presence of sgraffitos. These two buildings show such a regular and rhythmic composition of façades that the only reference to centrality is given by a single balcony in the middle of the chamfer. Not even the size of the balcony window corresponding to the central balcony deviates from the canon of the façade. In its completely flat façades, the vertical axes of balconies with a railing integrated into the façade wall are offset by small cornices that separate the floors. The sgraffitos bring a wealth of shapes and colours to façades dominated by compositional and decorative austerity. Its height distribution is a ground floor and four floors. The top floor replaces the balcony with a square window. It presents a recently built penthouse that was executed with the transformation of the building into a hotel. The distinguishing feature of these two buildings is the use of ceramic railings in all their balconies.
On the other hand, the building on 369 Consell de Cent with 51 Roger de Llúria Streets, although it follows the same formal and urban planning guidelines as the other two, maintains two different constructive façade solutions; the use of metal railings and the incorporation of glazed galleries in the two corners of the chamfer. In this case, it maintains the balcony solution up to the top floor and does not have façade sgraffitos.
The interior layouts are tidy with few communal stairs and spacious well-lit floors. The ground floor of all three buildings has openings for premises with sparse arches without decorations.
The roof of all three is flat. The perimeter of the crowning is solved with a solid work sill supported on a cornice with a continuous profile of a classic character.
Artistically, the delicate sgraffitos, attributed to the Italian artist Bellamini, feature a series of idealised human figures on pedestals and other classical ornamental forms. The use of sgraffitos by the artist to add a classical order to the façades especially around the bare openings such as entablature and pediments stands out.
The Cerdà houses, built in 1863, correspond perfectly to one of the typologies proposed in the " Reform and Expansion Plan ", approved in 1859, and specifically to one of the possible solutions for the controversial chamfers of the Cerdà Plan: immediately after the approval of the "Law of the Eixample of Barcelona" in 1859, companies were created to encourage their creation and construction. The urban development of Barcelona had Passeig de Gràcia as its axis, where the various recreational gardens that were there gradually became theatres as the population flocked there. The first sector of the Eixample to be built was the one later called "Dreta de l'Eixample", between Passeig de Gràcia, Passeig de Sant Joan, Gran Via and Diagonal Avenue, where the houses of Cerdà and the Passatge Permanyer (1864), which acted as enhancers of the rest of the area. The land included at the confluence of Llúria and Consell de Cent Streets was popularly called, since its foundation, Cerdà Square, but the attribution of this name is due to the owner of the land, Josep Cerdà i Soler, a Barcelona merchant who ceded it for the opening and organisation of the streets.