The narratives of Metròpolis take you to the city imagined or experienced by Barcelona writers. While we can’t physically go out for a stroll, we invite you to rediscover corners of the city through their eyes. Perhaps a first taste of their work might make you choose to buy one of their books for yourself or as a gift for Sant Jordi or some other time.
Here at Metròpolis magazine we’ve spent more than a decade inviting writers to tell us about their Barcelona, real or imagined. The task has always been open: to produce an account of the Barcelona they know, which they have experienced, which has surprised them or which they would like to exist. The piece can be fictional and/or autobiographical to any degree they wish.
All manner of literary pieces have resulted: tales, stories, chronicle and reflections that give us a chance to discover corners we didn’t know existed, to stroll around the different neighbourhoods and see parts of the city that everyone knows, but through different eyes.
Various authors have shared some of their youngest childhood memories with us. Lolita Bosch writes about the clinic in Sant Gervasi where she was born and explains how she has been back there on more than one occasion in Barcelona Lolita Casa.
Màrius Serra talks of school days in “Buga” in Horta, as does Maria Favà in Poblenou, from grey to blue. Their accounts help us discover the past and present of their neighbourhoods through what has been lost and what has been kept, depending on one’s perspective.
Coming from elsewhere to stay
The city hasn’t just been portrayed by lifelong Barcelonians Some came later and stayed. A delightful read is Murmurs, where Marta Orriols confesses that “There was a time when I desired that whole of Barcelona. All of it”.
Cuban writer Avilio Estévez arrived from further afield. The Hospital de la Santa Creu, which now houses the Biblioteca de Catalunya, was a great find for the writer. But if you want to know why, you’ll need to read his piece The old hospital garden.
From personal experience to fiction
Somebody who doesn’t live in the city, but who comes and goes, is the protagonist in the account by Kiko Amat entitled Landings. What we don’t quite know in this story is which part is down to the author’s own experience and which part is simply imagined. Another writer who plays with reality and fiction is Víctor García Tur, whose piece The hundredth monkey effect certainly won’t leave you indifferent.
Besides the facts, we invite you to enjoy two stores with surprising beginnings and even bigger twists at the end which we won’t spoil for you by explaining anything else about them here. One is Diamante, by Anna Pacheco, and the other is Debbie and Humbert by Irene Solà, two young writers with highly personal styles.
Make yourself comfortable and get ready to discover a city from your own home, through the eyes of these writers.