Barcelona has an intense, permanent literary programme involving a large number of fairs and festivals. Every year, the streets, buildings and outdoor areas of the city are filled with literature in the broadest sense of the word. There is a wide variety of gatherings and events that foster and promote such different genres as historic novels, poetry, editions, children’s or juvenile literature, comics and manga, noir fiction or illustrated books.
Horiginal. Weekly. Located opposite the MACBA on Carrer Ferlandina, 29, in the city centre, l'Horiginal is a restaurant where you can enjoy tapas, dishes, wines, and cocktails. Additionally, every Wednesday from 8:30pm in a room at the back of the restaurant behind velvet curtains, a poetry recital is held. It is the oldest fixed poetry programme in the city where over a generation of poets have participated.
Kosmopolis. March. This is an extended literature festival that has been held in Barcelona since 2002. Oral, written or electronic literature by authors, poets, scientists, musicians, comic illustrators, playwrights or script writers can be either listened to or read. The event tries to connect with the foundational spirit of art and freedom as citizens of the cosmos. There is also a permanent programme that keeps the spirit of the festival alive between its biennial events.
Liber. October. The Spanish Publishing Trade Federation promotes this International Book Fair. Liber is a fair that is exclusively devoted to Spanish books and includes conferences and business meetings between professionals from the sector, talks, round tables, award ceremonies and presentations. One year is celebrated in Madrid and another in Barcelona.
Literal, ideas marketplaces and literal books. May. Annual meetings have been held for Critical thought and alternative literature since 2015 at this book and ideas trade show organized by the cooperative CULTURA21 SCCL, sponsored by publishers Tigre de Paper, Virus, Pol·len, Bellaterra and Icària. From a collaborative and a particularly social spirit standpoint, Literal aims to offer readers a different literary slant than that offered by big organizations, and a point of view that is vastly different from mainstream arguments. As well as conferences, interviews and the book market organized, there is also music and gourmet food, all within an ambiance of cooperation and alternative thought.
Since 2002, Món Llibre is the children’s and juvenile Saint George’s Day when, the weekend before the day itself, book stands and workshops fill the literary triangle of the Raval neighbourhood running from Barcelona Contemporary Art Museum (MACBA) to the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB) and Plaça de Joan Coromines. An ideal place for families to enjoy literature.
Món Llibre. April. Since 2002, Món Llibre is the children’s and juvenile Saint George’s Day when, the weekend before the day itself, book stands and workshops fill the literary triangle of the Raval neighbourhood running from Barcelona Contemporary Art Museum (MACBA) to the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB) and Plaça de Joan Coromines. An ideal place for families to enjoy literature.
Poetry Slam Barcelona. Every month. With the collaboration of the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB) and the Barcelona City Council Institute of Culture, the Poetry Slam Barcelona competitions have been taking place one Sunday afternoon a month since 2010. These poetry art meetings show the skills and creativity of the slammers when reciting their verses on the stage. The audience acts as the jury and decides on the best artist of the night.
Primera Persona. May. Music, literature and scenic and visual arts can be found at this unique festival, where authors using their own experiences for creative material play a starring role. Names such as James Rhodes, Stephin Merritt, Juan Marsé and Carlos Zanón, Jaume Sisa and Pau Riba, Junot Díaz or Manolo García, among many others, have visited the festival that was created in 2011 to bridge the gap between life experiences and novels, monologues, films and songs.
Saló del Manga de Barcelona. November. Every year since 1995, the Federació d'Institucions Professionals del Còmic (FICOMIC) has organised the Barcelona Manga Fair. Devoted to the art of the Japanese comic and Japanese culture, the Barcelona Manga Fair is visited by many and enjoys wide recognition from professionals of the genre. In 2010, FICOMIC was awarded by the Japanese ministry of foreign affairs for its publicising of Japanese culture.
Saló Internacional del Còmic de Barcelona. May. Every year since 1981, the Federació d'Institucions Professionals del Còmic (FICOMIC) has organised the International Comic Fair of Barcelona. With the aim of promoting and publicising comics, it is a major meeting of authors, the general public and publishers. Different awards are also given to cartoon professionals at the fair (List here).