Focusing on the architectural foundations of this extraordinary city, Robert Hughes' account of Barcelona's growth in relation to the region of Catalunya also features political, economic and military drama.Focusing on the architectural foundations of this extraordinary city, Robert Hughes' account of Barcelona's growth in relation to the region of Catalunya also features political, economic and military drama.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 1993-02-22 Hughes's historical-cultural treatise on the Catalonian capital sparkles on the topic of architecture. Photos. (Mar.)
Publishers Weekly, 1992-01-06 This historical-cultural treatise on the Catalan capital arrives in time to prime tourists for the 1992 Olympics--although the city's parking problems will almost certainly not be solved by then. An observant and penetrating writer, Hughes, art critic for Time , conveys an exciting sense that he is reserving yet more opinions than are unleashed. He records and comments on the various myths of catalanisme , noting that Barcelona's reputation for dissidence should not be mistaken for leftism; rather, it reflects the indelibly bourgeois city's unquiet alienation from the dominant Castilian state. But even if Hughes served up history less capably, it would be hard to fumble with a subject so abundantly stocked with anecdotal plums. The author is very well versed in the general domain of the arts and letters; he is at his best, however, discussing architecture. Throughout the architectural history of Barcelona, authentic cultural expression faces off with a philistine instinct for ``restoration,'' and Hughes pointedly communicates his anguish over it. In all, the sense that after 2000 years Barcelona's character is still forming gives the work a special impact. Illustrations not seen by PW. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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