The modern garden in Spain, 1926-1980

Patricia Hernández Lamas

Miguel Ángel Aníbarro Rodríguez
Alberto Sanz Hernando

Until recently, the 20th Century was shown in gardening historiography mainly as a void, with the odd exception made for icons such as Barragán and Burle Marx, and the very existence of a garden linked to Modern architecture was mostly negated. This situation was especially harsh regarding 20th Century Spanish gardening, which has neither ever been studied from an analytical point of view, nor geographically, stylistically or culturally classified. Although some specific cases boast an ample bibliography (such as Park Güell, Parque María Luisa, Montjuïc, the Rubió gardens etc.), for a large number of them (including works by architects as significant as García Mercadal, Zuazo, Sert, Moreno Barberá, Fisac, etc.) and for a collective understanding of them there is a marked lack thereof.

If the garden is to be understood as an architectural type, one may justly assert that Spanish gardens of the 20th Century, whether as a whole or specifically regarding any of their foremost examples, have not as yet been assessed form an architectural point of view, maybe due to their being perceived as secondary to the building itself. A work such as the one being undertaken here, that is, one which comprehends a study of layouts, of spatial and volumetric organizations, of the correspondence between form and function, of the relationship between the garden ans its surroundings, and of theoretical constructs and their influence on actual works, is yet to be undertaken systematically regarding the Spanish case.