The transformation of the last thirty years of Poblenou, the anthological account by Neus Martín Royo

Taking advantage of the 150th anniversary of the Festa Major of the Barcelona neighbourhood of Poblenou, the artist Neus Martín Royo (Barcelona, 1968), considered the painter of Poblenou, opens the major anthological exhibition “Poblenou: The Painted Memory”, an ambitious pictorial and historical journey that portrays the transformation over the last 30 years of what is considered the “Catalan Manchester”.

The exhibition, which opens on 9 September and can be visited until 8 January, is distributed in four emblematic and industrial spaces – today rehabilitated – of Poblenou: the Torre de les Aigües, home of the Poblenou Historical Archive, MUHBA Oliva Artés, one of the headquarters of the Museum of History of Barcelona, the Palo Alto Foundation and the Can Felipa Civic Centre.

In addition to the four venues, the exhibition expands to 10 shops and cultural spaces in Poblenou that host paintings portraying them. These spaces are: Fundació Vila CasasMuseu Can Framis, Sala Beckett, the bookshops Etcètera and NoLlegiu, the cocktail bar Balius, the workwear shop la Africana, the horchatería El Tío Che, the pastry shop Triomf, the restaurant Can Recasens and the former Violeta, now Corbera.

Over the course of 30 years, the realist painter has mapped the urban transformation of Poblenou, bringing to life the memory of a time and a place that have often disappeared, but which make up the collective heritage of a neighbourhood with a unique personality.

In collaboration with the Poblenou Historical Archive, “Poblenou: The Painted Memory” proposes an artistic and historical dialogue between the most characteristic works of Neus Martín Royo and documentary material, with texts, photographs and plans, compiled and classified by the Archive, which explain the places painted by the artist and their evolution over time.

“Poblenou: The Painted Memory” is co-curated by Jordi Fossas Bonjoch, architect and president of the Poblenou Historical Archive, Joan Carles Luque Silvestre, historian and member of the Poblenou Historical Archive, Marta Pérez Ibáñez, historian and president of IAC, and Gloria Muñoz, painter and professor of Fine Arts at the UB.