Tarragona and a look back

here I look back almost 50 years at the same streets, houses and windows of Tarragona were I grew up. The little park-inside-a-roundabout. Everything looks changed but not changed and certainly tiny now. The same aluminum late-60’s windowframes with possibly the same thin surviving windowpanes I looked out at the world. The same narrow walkways and small storefronts, but now mostly shut; They look like little cave entrances compared to the grandeur of nowadays’ retail-chain halls somewhere else.

The old harbour, once a row of small fishermen houses with workshops where wives tended to the blue nyon fishnets and boats docked just before the horn blew the end of the fishing day at 5 PM, is now a strolling alley decorated with fountains. Fishnets gave room to icecream and coffee shops. My uncle used to be one of about 50 fishermen captains. He had his own boat and a crew of 7. Now five boats with a crew of 2 are allowed to operate from a little corner of the harbour. Yet the same moon rise over Tarragona, come night.

Fagus Werk, Walter Gropius, Alfeld

a meeting of purpose and the Fagus-Werk

three exceptional persons met in time and place in Alfeld, Lower Saxony in 1910 to create and build a dream; the Fagus-Werk. In one side the experienced 52 years old Carl Benscheidt believed that people’s feet deserved healthier shoes, in the other side Walter Gropius and Adolf Meyer on their late twenties believed that architecture must and can enlighten the job of people and organisations. These people seemed to me as leaving reasons of profit aside and focusing on better health for everyone, and enlightment for the those who will design and produce the lasts to make the shoes.

Being within these Bauhaus styled premises, one feels that economical success is a consecuence rather than the motive of this project that emerged from these three outstanding persons together and ultimately brought better feet health to mankind.