Writing on the wall

1 Aug
copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Marble simplicity

Happy Monday! Did you have a nice weekend? I certainly hope so! Today I have some examples of wall signs for you, which I hope you will enjoy…

Let’s start with the humble street sign, which in Barcelona is very decorative and made of marble.  The one above, just around the corner from the Cute Suite, is quite new, or in any case has kept its looks. The ones below, in the Barri Gótic, remind us of a time when the Catalan language was forbidden in Barcelona, and all signs were in Spanish. When Catalan was permitted again in recent democratic times, the newer marble plaque was added underneath, and the old frilly sign was kept.

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Bilingual

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Old and fancy

Above another example of the old frilly marble plaque, where the names of the district, neighborhood and the street were hand painted.

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Enamel one way

I’ve mentioned the very picturesque way in which one way streets were indicated in the past, here in Barcelona, before. Well here are some examples, in 3 different media: enamel, marble and hand painted.

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Marble no entry

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Painted no entry

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Crested marble

I’m not sure why the city crest has been added to this street sign (above) but it’s a nice touch, and as you can see, it was painted onto the marble by hand.

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Tile welcome

Hand painted tiles have also been widely used around Barcelona to indicate the names of streets or squares or buildings, and come in simple versions (like the very old hospital chapel tiles below) moderate ones (such as the Plaça de la Villa de Madrid) and very frilly ones (like the Sant Galdric tiles – gorgeous, aren’t they?). Some are quite old, others are more recent additions.

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Tile twin cities

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Saintly tiles

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Hospital chapel

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Art school

Buildings are often mentioned in plaques or tiles too, especially when commemorating specific anniversaries. Funnily enough, there does not seem to be a plaque celebrating the Ateneu’s 100th anniversary! I wonder why?

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Anniversary tiles

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

School

Sometimes the intention of the plaque or carving is purely decorative, such as on a school wall on Plaça de Castella (below).

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Wall art

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Ceramic homage

There are many commemorative plaques, in a variety of styles, dotted around walls in the city to celebrate or remember persons who lived or activities that took place there, and some are veritable works of art. I really like the wool spinner below.

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Games we play

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Marble dedication

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

Banner celebration

More recently banners are used. Obviously they are less costly, and although they can be quite beautiful, I think it’s a pity that money plays a more important role in modern commemoration,  than patronage of the arts and crafts.

Finally, a simple sign, in a cast metal, that refers to the gas connection in a particular building. Do you have those where you live?

copyright: Lisette van de Graaf

It’s a gas

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