Updated Apr 21 2020
A Room Where it Always Rains (In Catalan, Una habitació on sempre plou) is a that opened in 1992 located at plaça (square) del Mar, next to the Sant Miquel beach in the area of La Barceloneta. As with the other sculptures along the coastline of Barcelona, it is part of the initiative from the Barcelona City Council to offer a permanent contemporary sculpture exhibition that inhabits the reformed seafront after the large renovation of the area for the 1992 Olympic Games.
Juan Muñoz (1953-2001) was an important sculptor from Madrid awarded with the Spanish National Prize for Plastic Arts. Trained at recognised centres and academies in England and the United States, Juan Muñoz not only exhibited in Spain, but also throughout almost the whole of Europe, gaining major international recognition. One of the characteristics of his sculptural pieces, showed both in closed and open environments, is that they usually represent figures in a smaller size than usual.
Representation and meaning of the piece
The piece is part of a series of 5 small sized human figures, made from bronze and with a spherical base in cages. Despite this setting, which could be a motif of unity, each of the 5 figures, separated from each other and looking at different points, appear to be isolated from each other, something that seems to represent individual isolation in a society formed by individuals who, despite their physical closeness, are more and more distant from each other. The sandstone and three leafy trees around the sculptures appear to protect, even hide them, also forming a part of the piece.
Despite the many elements and details of the “Room where it Always Rains” sculpture, it is actually unfinished. The unfinished part of the installation is an irrigation system that should have had rain inside the cage. Also an extraction system was to be installed to collect the fallen leaves from the trees. This was never done due to technical problems which delayed the installation of the system. Unfortunately, when everything seemed to be resolved, Juan Muñoz died. Without the approval of its creator to complete the installation, it was decided to leave the piece unfinished but to keep its original name out of recognition to its creator.
This meant that the title “A Room Where it Always Rains”, does not fit what is actually happening inside the cage. Also, and ironically, it is one of the places in the area where it hardly rains or, better said, where rain hardly falls as the leafy trees protect the structure from the rain, like natural umbrellas.
Plaça (square) del Mar, Barcelona.
How to get there?
Metro: Barceloneta (line 4).
Bus: lines 39, 45, 59, D20, V15 and tourist bus.
By foot: if you would like to go for a pleasant walk, you can go by foot to the sculpture on a short walk between the narrow streets of the area of La Barceloneta, or along the promenade. We also recommend you to go by foot if you are in La Ribera – El Born or the lower part of the Gothic Quarter.