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Pla de l'Os

Thousands of people walk over Joan Miró's pavement mosaic in the centre of Barcelona's Rambla. It goes unnoticed by some, others stop to look at the characteristic colours used by the Barcelona-born artist. However, few people know that an important Rambla landmark once stood opposite this site: the famous Boqueria gate.

It is said that the people of Barcelona were dumbstruck when they saw the gate Count Berenguer IV had had brought all the way from Almeria as a war trophy. A beautiful arabesque work which replaced the former gate of Santa Eulàlia, and was named the Boqueria gate. The gate disappeared when the city walls were demolished in 1760, creating a large open space on the site, known as the Pla de l'Os.

In 1976, the artist Joan Miró chose this spot on Barcelona's Rambla to incorporate one of his works into the pavement, close to the Passatge del Crèdit, the place where he had been born 83 years earlier. His intention was for passers-by to walk over the mosaic, and he wasn't concerned about it getting damaged. However, over the years, the cobblestones deteriorated and the colours faded, and in 2006, the Barcelona City Council decided to restore this Joan Miró's milestone to mark its 30th anniversary.

The mosaic is circular like the cosmos and its basic colours – yellow, blue and red – and simple forms, are redolent of Joan Miró's language: an intuitive language that retains the purity of the world of childhood.

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