Crafting Gracia Style

Chicken wire, newspapers, aluminum foil, paper maché, glue guns, plastic tubing = community craft project, aka preparing for Festa Major de Gracia. (As usual, please click on the pictures for larger images).

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Catalan banner in English means “Respect the decorations, our identity, our origins”

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Bicing bike share rider approaches the Festa preparation area.

Down the block, Festa preparations began last weekend, ten days before the official start on August 15. The party continues for seven days, and because we are in Spain, seven nights.

Neighbors on scaffolding built a frame on the second story above one end of the block.

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The men are busy with chicken wire construction and boxes of aluminum foil and plastic wrapped fish figures.

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Then the fish leapt onto the frame.

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Other glue-gun wielding Gracians create green, yellow and orange fish with plastic tubing skeletons, chicken wire flesh, and paper maché skin.

We see old men, young boys, and women threading newspaper through another chicken wire structure–evoking seaweed or a coral reef next week?

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Las chicas carefully avoided walking beneath ladders used to stretch blue fabric across the street. During Festa, we will walk beneath the sea.

“One week, no sleep,” is how our airport taxi driver described the biggest neighborhood block party in Barcelona. He lives here too, and said “People fighting, people drinking, people eating.”

Our host-in-abstentia mentioned “Oh, I think there might be a band outside our window.”

One-minute video of this morning’s preparations for the Festa: http://vimeo.com/71956523

We will keep you posted on the preparations and the big Festa next week, what Lonely Planet calls Spain’s Craziest Block Party.

© 2013 by Lisa Howells and Mary Reynolds. All rights reserved

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