Typically you may expect to be praying the novena and asking God for absolution of your dastardly sins here in this sprawling compound called The Konvent near Barcelona. While no one would stop you today, you may also wish to check out a number of new installations throughout the many buildings by Street Artists.
The Roman Catholic former convent hosted 50 or so artists over the last couple of years to transform the space, perhaps to reinterpret its original charge in a modern light, perhaps just to ready the compound for commercial, cultural, and community pursuits of the owners.
Certainly the decaying spaces and austere aesthetic is inviting, calming, possibly frightening, depending on your associations. Now they are home for music, dance, theatre, film festivals, and artist residencies – often offered only in Catalan but some also in European Spanish.
As you walk through the spaces you are welcomed by these works by artists, many of them at one time or another categorized as Street Artists, whose voices now usher in a new era of contemplation and perhaps internal exploration.
Our thanks to photogapher and BSA contributor Lluis Olive Bulbena for sharing these images from El Konvent.
For more information about El Konvent please Click HERE
The influence of Street Art and graffiti continues to disperse through cities, towns and the countryside of many regions in the form of mural festivals. The village of Penelles in Catalonia asks residents if they would like to hand over the walls of their houses to be painted by contemporary artists and many say yes, gladly.
It is a far cry from the responses of landlords in large cities where the association in the minds of many is graffiti and vandalism. According to a posting on Facebook, the challenge for attendees of a recent mural festival here was to gather enough money to rent a bus and drive people around to see the new artworks!
GarGar, the festival held in the third week of May, also featured live music, food trucks, beer, workshops, and people milling around taking photos of the artists while they worked and discussing the new pieces. Perhaps taking as a model the same concept as the Spanish town of Fanzara, Penelles is a small sleepy town that is being revitalized with urban art.
Photographer Luis Olive Bulbena tells us that the town, which is located around 130 km northwest of Barcelona, has about 500 inhabitants and “basically the whole of the municipality revolves around agriculture.”
We thank Mr. Bulbena for sharing these new images with BSA readers.