Barcelona kicks off the fall art season with Gallery Weekend, October 1 through 4.

By Andrew Ferren
Updated: January 24, 2017
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Not so long ago, many of Barcelona’s prime art galleries were clustered around the junction of the major thoroughfares Rambla de Catalunya and Carrer Consell de Cent. Literally sharing the sidewalks facilitated an informal camaraderie, as well as joint openings to bring art lovers to the galleries’ doorsteps. But after several years during which tough economic times in the art market have coincided with a real estate shakeup for the city’s prime retail spaces, the map of Barcelona’s gallery scene is quickly being redrawn.   

To help underscore the city’s rapidly expanding arts scene, the city is holding the first ever Barcelona Gallery Weekend October 1 through 4, and ambitious event featuring more than 40 participating venues, including galleries, alternative exhibition spaces, and larger institutions like CaixaForum (pictured), the Picasso Museum, and the Joan Miró Foundation, which will offer special programs throughout the weekend geared to out-of-town visitors.

Designed for art lovers, collectors, professionals and artists, organizers hope to make it a can’t-miss annual event for a global audience. There will be four routes around galleries, institutions and singular spaces for guests to visit, which will highlight the city’s creative scope. A wealth of international talent will be exhibiting, including Francesc Ruiz, currently showing at the Spanish Pavillion of the Venice Biennale; and Joaquín Torres García, currently holding a retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art; there will also be programming to exhibit emerging artists, too.

Among the galleries that have migrated away from the old cluster is Galeria Senda, which inaugurates a new space on the up-and-coming Carrer Trafalgar at the edge of the city’s Gothic quarter. Participating galleries also include Galería Marc Domenech, Galeria Joan Prats, and Nogueras Blanchard, among others. The first weekend of October is prime time to enjoy Barcelona as the fall season kicks into high gear. 

Andrew Ferren is on the Spain beat for Travel + Leisure. He lives in Madrid.