Wednesday, February 26, 2014

More from El Raval

This time a little more indoors and a little more architectural, not so much street art:

A couple of different buildings, the first is owned by the Diputació, a branch of gov't I am still unclear about, but which is near the CCCB and contains the mystery church I've never found.  It used to be an orphanage and poor house.


This is a linotype press, made in the US.  I was told that the orphanage had a number of workshops designed to teach the children a trade, and that the printing house and the papers and magazines it produced was the last to close, I suspect that this may have been the last remnant of that work.

Fancy stairs, no?

There's a cafe in the courtyard, haven't gone yet, but it may be worth a visit sometime

You've seen this guy before,

in the last post.

Do you see how he looks like he is holding something in his mouth?  It's a downspout.

See those gaps between the stones?  They're there on purpose.

See that?  With the holes in it?  That's all quite deliberate too.

You see, the entire underside of this courtyard is a cistern, and the roofs and balconies all feed into it with downspouts pouring into the courtyard.

Which, if you look closely, is sloped towards the edges, and there are drains going to the four corners, where that filter with the five holes sits.

The spaces between the stones are just visible in this photo as well at the edge of the central courtyard, so that the water from the roofs and downspouts can flow into the cistern more rapidly.

another downspout

this was the grill over the central well.  I thought this was insanely well designed and I am simply amazed that it was, and is, not common practice.  I mean really, it is beautiful and highly functional!

I debated whether these were street art or architectural art, they made it in over here, even though you can see it from the street.  Amazing, no?

In a courtyard, it's from 1629, and as you might imagine there is a story behind it, but we couldn't remember it.

The library of Catalunya, from the entrance way upstairs

A view of another courtyard.

A central space in a hotel in el Raval, sadly it kind of smelled like drains, but was nonetheless lovely.


Anonymous said...

That was a workhouse?Seadog

oreneta said...

Amazing, eh? I was pretty stunned too, I do wonder what the bits inside were like, but they were working pretty hard at having lots of water, so it may have been kinda clean. Work house here doesn't seem to have the same connotations as Dickens has informed us they deserved in London.

Anonymous said...

Interesting cistern system. Although for the water to be clean, you'd have to assume the courtyard also was, I guess... Wouldn't want to mix the water with horse manure :D. I can think of a few trades where a lot of water would be involved. Leather making? Giant laudromat?

Anonymous said...

Wow! Amazing photos of your visit. Incredible!

oreneta said...

The cistern system was really cool.....and the courtyard would not be as clean as it could be...but sometimes water is water and you do what you in boil it or add booze. And I bet you're right that a number of trades that they housed there needed the water. A shame we don't have dual systems still.....

Carla, it's a pretty cool place!