We have wanted to
focus the debate introduced in the present 42 number of B.MM on some of the issues of
current concern to the residents of the Poble Nou district in connection with the effects
that the large-scale city-planning projects soon to be carried out in the vicinity are
likely to have upon that historical neighbourhood. The extension of "Diagonal"
avenue and the development of the new Diagonal-Mar area will inevitably lead to the
collision betwen old and newly created "habitats", so that we should try to work
out a solution that would cause as little damage as possible to the population concerned.
If we are to take steps consistent with the principle which claims that "a city
belongs to its inhabitants", and if we want this assertion to transcend the limits of
a well-meaning slogan and actually reflect the fundamental conception that inspires a
progressive municipal policy, it seems absolutely necessary to attend to the growing
public concern over the future of a district that, like all the peripheral areas which
have at some time had to undergo alterations so as to form an urbanistic
"continuum" with the metropolis, cannot be expected to adopt an attitude of
irresponsible indifference or of blissfully contemplative acceptance towards the changes
that are being forced upon its inhabitants. This is why our magazine has asked Elisabet
Fejero, Rafael Encinas, Carles Guiral and Joan Maria Soler to voice their opinion on the
current reality of Poble Nou, a district which they know well and to which they profess
true commitment in their respective positions and through the exercice of their diverse
Following the line
taken by our publication when reporting on the momentous urbanistic transformation
prompted by the celebration of the 1992 Olympic Games, B.MM will strive to give the most
extensive and thorough account of the stages and characteristics of this new large-scale
city-planning venture which is due for completion in 2004 and which should serve to
"put the finishing touches to Barcelona", including very ambitious undertakings
within the whole eastern area of the city.
In this context, listening to the many Poble Nou residents who have raised a voice in an
attempt to ensure that those city-planning operations are carried out in a way that might
harmonize with the citizens' interests, could only be viewed as a priority matter by a
publication like ours, which is permanently trying to vindicate its condition of
"magazine of the city".
Where strictly cultural matters are concerned, this new edition of our magazine features
an important piece of research centred on the period of time during which the most
significant aesthetic movements of this century took definite shape, when great
exhibitions played a far-reaching role by importing their own dynamic into the art world.
Professor Bracons is the author of this study which refers to Barcelona as a lively
setting in which plastic art manifestations could have a decisive influence on future art
forms and styles. An exhibition could become the driving force behind a swirl of heated
discussion and polemic, as well as an essential point of reference for many years
afterwards. Backed up by Pilar Parcerisas's expert comments, an extensive bibliography and
a basic account of events in chronological order, we feel confident that the study which
we present in our "Quadern Central" section will serve as a handy work of
reference and, eventually, as a basis for the kind of thorough historical research that,
as Bracons reminds us, still remains "to be done and thought out".