Travel: Montjuic

I had originally planned to take a day trip to the Pyrenees Mountains in order to explore the smaller mountain villages and the ancient Monastery of Montserrat. However, taking a bus trip is generally unappetizing for my family given that we have ventured to China, the Southwestern United States, and Japan in this manner previously, and dislike the lack of freedom and spontaneity it results in. Additionally, I would love to hike from the border of Spain into the border of France, and I simply don’t have the time at this moment.


Taking a more leisurely day, we took the Funicular up to the Montjuic Park, where we perused the galleries of the Joan Miro Foundation, one of my mom’s admired artists. Admittedly, despite understanding the progression of his style, and how he sought to veer away from traditional practices, I still don’t quite comprehend his aesthetic.

Joan Miro is a multifaceted artist of Catalonian heritage he is known as being a painter, sculptor, and ceramicist born in Barcelona.

His work is best interpreted as Surrealism, a simplified style representative of the subconscious mind; It is childlike in form. This stemmed from his contempt for convention and his view that it supported a bourgeois society.

As usual, no pictures were allowed, it was quite an interesting showcase however.

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We then hopped a bus further up the ‘mountain’ to explore the ruins of Montjuic Castle, a fortress overlooking a cliff on the eastern side. It is a fortress that dates from the early 17th century. It was loyal to the Madrid Government and thereby shelled the city in 1842. The history of this military structure includes the use of it as a holding cell for political prisoners, and the numerous executions that occurred on sight. It is most popularly recognized for an 1897 incident known as Els processos de Montjuïc which prompted the execution of anarchist supporters leading to a repression of worker civil liberties. During the Spanish Civil War, both Nationalists and Republicans were executed there, each at the time when the site was held by their opponents. (Thanks Wikipedia, not much information was available on site).

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Due to our travel plans that involve crossing into France early in the morning, we called it a day, and took a bus back to the city catching splendid views of the Palau Nacional on the way back. This also gave me some time to make a focused effort at catching up with my blog entries. Some nights, after a day of avid exploring, I am simply too exhausted to write as much as I’d like, preferring to simply read or watch TV instead.

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