Ground Floor, Historic building of the University of Barcelona, Spain

The architectural organization of the building responds to two main ideas; that of placing the auditorium at the center of its composition, and that of the direct correspondence of each of the parties located on both sides of the central body.

The building is organized into two lateral bodies intended for scientific studies on the right and letter studies on the left, and a central body where the auditorium and central lobby are located from. the space is branched and organized through the scale of honor.

Main lobby
The main lobby of the building is the first sign of monumentality that the visitor encounters as he enters the interior of the building. This monumentality is enhanced by the presence of the stairs of honor, the organization of the space in three naves separated by majestic columns and by the great statues of the Vallmitjana brothers who decorate the walls.

The lobby is divided into three eight-section naves and is covered with vaults.Spanish provinces. On the walls are five statues of the Vallmitjana brothers (Agapit Vallmitjana and Barbany Venanci Vallmitjana Barbany), who represent Sant Isidor of Seville, Averrois, Alfonso X the Wise, Ramon Llull and Joan Lluís Vives.

Above the lobby is the Auditorium, the nerve center and representative symbol of the building.

Patio de Letras
The two sides of the building are articulated around two twin courtyards. Each corresponded to the two faculties that housed the Historical Building: the one of Letters (at present reduced to Philology) and the one of Sciences (at the moment Mathematical). They are formed by two floors of 11 x 7 arches, with a third level of terrace without covering.

The cloisters, articulated centers of each of the two faculties, are organized on two porched floors, and a third floor that creates an uncovered terrace. The cloisters have a length of 11 x 7 arches, of which capitals are all of medieval taste.

The courtyard of Lletres, on the left wing (Llobregat band, which overlooks Aribau street) of the building, housed the Faculty of Law on the ground floor and, on the first floor, what was called Philosophy and Letters (later divided into Philosophy, Geography and History, Philology, etc.) and also the School of Architecture.

In the Science yard, on the right wing (Besòs band, which overlooks Balmes street), there were the faculties of experimental sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, etc.) on the ground floor and the Faculty of Pharmacy in the first floor.

During the period of the Autonomous University of Barcelona (1933-1939), the University’s Board of Trustees undertook a number of restoration and adaptation work on the building. From this age it is the placement of ponds with water lilies or the flower beds with cypresses of the patios.

The Historic Building opens to the rear and sides through the Ferran Soldevila Garden, named since 1995 in homage to this historian. Although it was inaugurated, along with the building, in 1871, the fence that encloses the garden was not installed until 1892-1893.

Between 1939 and 1945, various repairs and rehabilitation of the spaces damaged by the bombings were undertaken, as well as more significant reforms, such as the chapel’s installation of a ground floor premises where there were laboratories.

Historic building of the University of Barcelona
The historic building of the University of Barcelona, initially called the Literary University building, was built between 1863 and 1892/93 according to the project of the architect Elies Rogent i Amat and began teaching in 1871. Located on University Square, it housed for almost a century most of the city’s colleges and universities, divided between the Courtyard of Letters and the Courtyard of Science. On February 26, 1970 the building was declared a national historical and artistic monument. The Plaça Universitat building is currently the oldest campus of the University of Barcelona. It houses the faculties of Philology and Mathematicsfrom the University of Barcelona.

A neo-Romanesque building, the building is the paradigmatic example of nineteenth-century architecture, a search for a national cultural identity that is typical of the moment. It is important, then, to know the context and at the same time the architectural theory of Rogent, which, as some authors have said, is more important and more transcendental than the work of the architect himself. The most important aspects of Rogent’s theory, when approaching the study of this building, are the constant rejection of the classifying training he received at the Escola de Llotja de Barcelona, the influence of the work by Francesco Milizia and his relationship with the group of Catalan Nazarenes. Milizia’s work; Principles of Civile Architecture, gathers the most advanced thought of the eighteenth century, which denounces classicist practice in architecture, elevates gothic architecture as an alternative to outdated classicism, and elaborates a whole theory on the organizational adequacy of space for the use to which the buildings are intended. The last point Milizia addresses is what we can see Rogent addressing in the University building.

Another important aspect to keep in mind when talking about the style of this building is the discovery that Rogent made during his 1855 voyage to France and Germany, where he discovered the Rundbogenstil (arch style) in Munich. round point) a combination of early Italian Renaissance architecture and medieval architecture, which will significantly and significantly use it in the construction of the University. In Munich, the main buildings projected following the Rundbogenstil that Rogent sees and studies in detail are the State Library of Bavaria, University of Munich. and the Max Josephstift corner pavilion at Ludwingstrasse.

In short, the university building is complex to define, but eclecticism, the influence of Catalan medieval architecture and the influence of the first Italian Renaissance are the basic style features of this building.