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Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona (MACBA)

The Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona, known as the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona or MACBA, is dedicated to artworks from the second half of the 20th century. It’s a must-see for contemporary art enthusiasts!

What to See and Do at MACBA

MACBA is particularly worth visiting if you enjoy modern art. If not, it may suffice to admire the building designed by Meier from the outside, contrasting beautifully with the surrounding old buildings. Good to know: the museum offers free Wi-Fi for its visitors, so make sure to take advantage of this!

MACBA Museu d'Art Contemporani deBarcelona

Museum Collection

MACBA showcases the work of contemporary artists such as Antoni Tàpies, Paul Klee, Francesc Torres, Mario Merz, and Zush. The collection focuses on the legacy of the second half of the 20th century and aims for a critical perspective. Guided tours and workshops, often suitable for children, are offered. This way, the museum attempts to bring modern art closer to the public.

The collection begins with abstract art from the 1950s and follows the evolution of European Pop, the Avant-gardes of the 60s and 70s, and the anti-minimalist sculpture of the 80s to the current young artists.

Museum Building

American architect Richard Meier had the challenging task of creating a museum building for contemporary artworks, which were entirely unknown to him at the time of the design. For many, it’s precisely his creation that makes a visit to MACBA so special. Be aware of this during your visit to the museum.

Did you know that the decision to locate the museum at Plaça dels Àngels was Meier’s own wish, wanting the building amidst some of Barcelona’s oldest buildings?

Laie Museum Shop

After your visit, you can stop by the museum shop, also part of the Laie bookstore chain. Here you’ll find many books and souvenirs related to your visit and modern art.

Plaça dels Àngels

Plaça dels Àngels, where MACBA is located, is a beautiful and lively square with nice terraces to sit and relax. But the real eye-catchers, besides the museum building itself, are the many skaters practicing their tricks here.

History of MACBA Barcelona

The background of the current MACBA dates back to 1959 when art critic Alexandre Cirici Pellicer emphasized the need for a museum of contemporary art in Barcelona. Alexandre Cirici and Cesáreo Rodríguez-Aguilera, along with other personalities, started a collection with the goal of displaying it in a future museum of modern art. After further attempts to open a museum of contemporary art in Barcelona, MACBA was established in 1988 and later opened in 1995.

The modern building housing MACBA is the work of American Richard Meier, who had the difficult task of creating a building for a museum that had no artworks yet. The chosen location, in the heart of the old El Raval district, marked the beginning of the neighborhood’s transformation into the trendy area it is today.

MACBA Barcelona Tickets

It is advisable to purchase your MACBA tickets online in advance. Not only do you avoid the queues, but you also get extra discounts! Tickets from €12 per person. Children under 14 years old and seniors have free entry.

Note: For groups larger than 10 people, you need to make a separate reservation.

Visit MACBA Barcelona for Free

You can access the permanent and temporary collections of MACBA for free every Saturday evening between 4:00 PM and 8:00 PM. Be sure to arrive early as it can get busy.

Getting to MACBA Barcelona

MACBA is located in the El Raval neighborhood, within walking distance of Plaça Catalunya (metro L1, L3, L6, and L7) and Plaça Universitat (metro L1 and L2). The easiest route is from the side of the Ramblas: turn right at Carrer del Bonsuccés and walk straight until you reach Plaça dels Àngels. There, you will encounter Meier’s iconic white museum building.

Useful information

Price: €12

Free for children under 14 years, 65 and older, unemployed, and holders of the Barcelona Card and Articket. Also free for students of geography, history, fine arts, or art history. Holders of the Bus Turístic and Barcelona City Tour get additional discounts.

Free visit to MACBA every Saturday evening between 4:00 PM and 8:00 PM.

Opening Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 11:00 AM to 7:30 PM. Saturday from 10:00 AM to 9:00 PM, and Sunday and holidays from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Closed on Tuesdays.

Address: Plaça dels Àngels, 1 08001 Barcelona

Public Transport:

Metro:  Catalunya (L1, L3, L6, L7) Universitat (L1, L2)

Bus: 120

Train: Catalunya (R1, R3, R4, S1, S2, S6)