152nd Anniversary of Antoni Gaudí with coca de piñones
Barcelona, June 21st 2004.- As a good son of the Camp de Tarragona, Antoni Gaudí was found of dried fruit and nuts. For this reason and as next June 25th it’s the 152nd anniversary of his birthday, the association Gaudí & Barcelona Club proposes to all the admirers of the architect to celebrate this anniversary and have some coca de piñones at “San Juan”.
This is a worldwide convocation. The Gaudí & Barcelona Club has made a call to its more than 14.000 members across the world and to all the cultural Catalan country houses inviting them to celebrate the summer solstice with coca, muscatel and firecrackers. At midnight some moments will be dedicated to the remembrance of the illustrious architect creator of the Sagrada Familia.
The month of June opens and closes Gaudí’s life cycle. The architect was born June 25th 1852, 9.30 AM in the Camp de Tarragona. Victim of a lamentable tram accident, he died almost 74 years later, on June 10th 1926.
Eduard Solé, president of the association Gaudí & Barcelona Club, deplores that, “after the splendor of Gaudí 2002, officially the genius architect seems to be forgotten, and his works seem to have become a merely attraction for tourists. That’s why we would like to rehabilitate his remembrance with this coca de piñones convocation”.
Although very celebrated, Gaudí’s work is quit scarce. Many of his projects never got realized and some of his interventions have been lost forever. In 1984, the UNESCO declared three of his works “Patrimony of Mankind”; Palace Güell, Park Güell and Casa Milà. It will take about 20 years before his masterwork the Expiatory Temple of the Sagrada Familia will be completed.
Misunderstood in life, much-admired after his death; genius architect and currently on his way to beatification; Antoni Gaudí is a unique and incomparable man in world’s history. He was an ardent admirer of Nature and considered that forms and ideas can be extracted by simply observing her. His alimentation, always healthy, was frequently based on dried fruit and nuts, as he was found hazelnuts, almonds and pine nuts, all of them very abundant in the land he was born.
The tradition of the verbena of San Juan
The magical night of San Juan is the shortest night of the year and marks the beginning of the summer solstice. It’s when the sun, symbol of fertility and richness, is at its highest point and can be seen during more time. The legends relate how witches go out screaming and yelling uninhibitedly, because that night it's Christmas time in hell. Today people still dance around the campfires in order to purify and dispel bad luck. In Catalonia people eat the traditional coca, an egg-shaped cookie of candied fruit and pine nuts accompanied with muscatel –sweet wine-, while the youngest enjoy the clatter of the firecrackers, which traditionally were pretended to dispel the witches.
According to the Greek and Roman mythology, the campfires were lighted in honor of Palas, God of Fire. Maybe this god put a new born on earth 152 years ago, gifted with a grand creative capacity…
About the “Gaudí & Barcelona Internet Club” association
The Gaudí & Barcelona Internet Club is a non profit organisation created with the purpose to share the life and work of Antoni Gaudí with the world. The association’s starting point was the creation of the Club in 1997, with its website www.gaudiclub.com which today has more than 14.000 members of all nationalities who are constantly informed about everything related to Gaudí. The Gaudí & Barcelona Club website is the most complete existing site about the architect. It has an online shop where you can buy any product related to gaudinist aesthetics, and an active forum where the admirers of the architect have vivid conversations. In its ambition to stimulate the culture and divulge the figure of Gaudí all around the world, the club is in touch with a large number architects, designers and many other people who are passionate about his works. Furthermore, it collaborates with universities, art centres, institutions and cultural associations of different countries, offering its collaboration and experience. Just click on www.gaudiclub.com.