Many people who have visited Barcelona and have not been to its museums, possibly when naming the National Museum of Art of Catalonia the name does not mean anything to them.
But if you tell them that it is the imposing building that is located in the Plaza de España at the foot of the Montjuic mountain and in front of which the light source is located, they will surely know what building we are talking about.
Discovering the Museum building, the National Palace of Montjuic
The building in which the National Art Museum of Catalonia is located is officially called the National Palace of Montjuic.
It was built between 1926 and 1929 for the 1929 Universal Exhibition held in Barcelona.
The style of the building is eclectic and it has some parts that can be reminiscent of other monuments such as its dome, which reminds us of Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome, or its side towers, which could well be the Giralda in Seville.
From its interior we can highlight several rooms such as the Throne Room, with unbeatable decoration; the Tea Room, formerly the restaurant but now the library; and of course the Great Hall, with spectacular columns and where a grandstand for 1,300 people is installed.
The decoration of each corner of the building is in itself a great museum.
The Collection of the National Art Museum of Catalonia
The museum is made up of a large number of works of art spanning different periods of history and artistic styles.
In addition, since 2004 it has had a part of the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection that was transferred from Madrid.
However, the most interesting part of the museum is the one dedicated to Romanesque art with works of high artistic value from the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries, among which the series of mural paintings as well as various sculptures stand out.
In addition, in the museum you can also see other works of Gothic style, from wall paintings to sculptures and goldsmith objects, and from the Renaissance and Baroque era with paintings by Rubens, Titian, El Greco or Fran Angélico.
The collection is completed by a series of works of modern art whose artists include Pablo Picasso, Antonio Tapies or Antonio Gaudí, as well as the sections of drawings, engravings, numismatics or photography.
You can find more information on the official page of the National Museum of Art of Catalonia.