Whether you have visited on a Saturday morning or know nothing of its history, the Casa Bloc in the Sant Andreu district of Barcelona, hides a number of curiosities and peculiarities that we reveal in these seven facts.
Social housing of the 30's
The housing complex was built at the instigation of the government of the Generalitat de Catalunya (the government of Catalonia) during the Second Republic, and served to counteract the social injustices of the time.
Macià and the first stone
The president of the Generalitat, Francesc Macià, and the Mayor of Barcelona, Jaume Aiguader, laid the first stone of the housing complex on 12th March, 1933.
Dignity for the proletariat
The complex of dwellings was designed to accommodate workers who were most at need economically and socially, without compromising the quality of materials, spaces and basic needs of the people.
The pearl of GATCPAC
The architects Josep Lluís Sert, Josep Torres Clavé and Joan Baptista Subirana were the designers of this example of rationalist architecture. They were part of the Grup d’Artistes i Tècnics Catalans pel Progrés de l’Arquitectura Contemporània (Group of Catalan Artists and Technicians for the Progress of Contemporary Architecture, GATCPAC).
Barcelona, rationalist city
The Casa Bloc is not the only example of rationalist architecture in Barcelona. There are other outstanding spaces, also built under GATCPAC ideas, in the city: the Fundació Miró building, Casa López on Carrer Muntaner and the Casa Rodríguez Arias on the Via Augusta.
A house very much alive
In 2012, one of the dwellings in Casa Bloc opened its doors to the public, the so-called 1/11 house. It has been restored, returning it to its original appearance, and can be visited on Saturday mornings on a guided tour. All the other dwellings in the block maintain their original purpose, and are still inhabited.
An Iconic House
It is part of the international Iconic Houses network, which consists of unique houses and house-museums open to the public. Its aim is to publicise the architectural heritage and strengthen ties between this type of space.