Address: Carrer Guardia, 10, 08001 Barcelona
Hours: Wed - Thurs (Sun) 5pm-11pm
Fri - Sat 5pm-12pm
Mon - Tue Closed
Pablo Picasso. Salvador Dali. Joan Miró. What do all of these iconic vanguard artists have in common? They were all inspired by the unique and rare beauty of Barcelona. I've felt the same way on many an occasion. There’s just something so special about the light and the way it bounces off all the different textures throughout the city. I don’t paint of course, but I’m often struck by the beauty of the place and inspired to write or capture it through the lens of my camera.
But it’s not just about the heroes of bygone times, the world of art is still very much alive and well in Barcelona and the city continues to play an important role in the creative realms.
For a deep dive into Barcelona’s rich and explosive contemporary arts scene I recommend a visit to this radical and ever-evolving space. Self described as a “multidisciplinary arts space dedicated to the dissemination and exhibition of creative work and contemporary artistic expression”, Miscelanea is continuously at the forefront of contemporary art and museums in Barcelona.
With regular exhibitions, workshops, music and audiovisual events, Miscelanea supports and celebrates the work of local and international creators whilst pushing and challenging the boundaries of what we perceive as modern art. In other words, it’s all about the future of art as opposed to its past.
And that’s what stirred my imagination more than anything when I first visited, that there are people here with such passion for discovering the next generation of artists, unafraid to break the mould and shock their audience in the name of art and progress.
The gallery is the soul of the venue and showcases a constantly rotating series of fresh exhibitions, whilst the music and audiovisual events offer experimental electronica sessions, small format concerts and full production stage shows that offer mind-expanding experiences to say the very least.
Actually, I’ve left here on a number of occasions feeling that my mind was not only expanded, but morphed and melted by the sheer brilliance of the work. It’s like no other art gallery you’ve ever been to.
If you want to treat yourself to a souvenir that will eternally remind you of your time in Barcelona, the Miscelanea shop is just the ticket. Here you can shop for original art work, copies and prints, related literature, clothing, gifts and accessories. And if you want to stay a little longer to revel in your new found artistic liberation, do as I do and sneak into the cosy onsite cafe to mingle with local artists and discuss the world of art over a coffee or glass of vino.
What I should also mention is that Miscelanea is located in the neighbourhood of Raval, which is part of the historic city centre. It’s not so obvious now, but if you came to Barcelona five or ten years ago you may well have avoided this area. It was referred to as the “Barrio Chino” (Chinatown) and was notorious for petty crime and generally being a little bit dangerous. This all changed, however, when the local government decided to invest heavily in the area and develop what are now some of Barcelona’s most important cultural institutions: MACBA (the contemporary museum of art), CCCB (the centre of contemporary culture) and the Filmoteca (cinema and film archive), all walking distance from Miscelanea. As well as being world-class facilities that continue to attract art lovers from all over the world, they have also contributed to the spectacular transformation of the area and Barcelona as a whole.
Importantly, Miscelanea is the continuation of this regeneration and, to me at least, is a symbol of Barcelona’s commitment to the future development of art, in whatever form it comes in.