Masia d'en Cabanyes
LocationCamí Ral, 3 08800 Vilanova i la Geltrú
The Cabanyes Masia, situated in the outskirts of Vilanova I la Geltrú, offers a vision of the history of the cultural movement of Romanticism through the Cabanyes family and its legacy bringing together the different elements of the romantic heritage found in the different municipalities of the county of Garraf. The center shows the patrimony of the cabanyes family through the different periods in which the house was occupied by the family. On the main floor we find the dinning-room, kitchen, library and music room displaying the original decoration of the period.
The Cabanyes family reflect the ideals of Romanticism which break with the norms of the neoclassic exalting the individual but at the same time rooting itself in the different disciplines. They contributed to different fields of knowledge including literature, science and technology, painting, architecture and maritime commerce, staying true to these ideals. The most distinguished member of the family was the poet Manuel de Cabanyes, 1808-1833, at the forefront of the literary European Romantic movement in our country, and the painter Alexandre de Cabanyes, 1877-1972, who was the last to live in the house.
The structure is a modest-size neoclassic palace built in 1798 and declared of national cultural interest due to the exceptional Catalan architecture from the end of the 18th century it displays. The architectural style is inspired in the Palladian villa as well as showing typical elements of the Catalan farmhouse such as porticos. Inside the house we find various collections of the Cabanyes family including etchings by Francisco Goya from The Follies series. Outside one can enjoy picturesque views of the area as well as the romantic garden, a wooded area and an area for picnics.
VisitThe Masia d'en Cabanyes Country House-Museum can be visited on Saturdays and Sundays at 11:00 a.m., 12:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. For 50 minutes, visitors enjoy a journey through the history, art and everyday life of the Cabanyes family and their legacy. A dynasty that marked the history of Romanticism in our country. Additionally, personalized visits are organized here that may include a glass of cava in the gardens and on the porches, as well as the "Evenings at the Masia" visits that are usually held during the summer.
On the other hand, the first Sunday of every month at 12:00 noon we offer the possibility of a visit focusing on Francisco de Goya’s Los Disparates (The Follies), 12 recently authenticated engravings from the collection started in the early nineteenth century by Josep Antoni de Cabanyes i Ballester.
The "Manuel de Cabanyes Romanticism Interpretation Center" (C.I.R.M.A.C) offers a program of educational activities for various learning and scholastic levels. Through the legacy of the Cabanyes family, values and concepts related to Romanticism, freedom of the individual, privacy and reflection, landscape and environment, innovation, entrepreneurship, economic and social power, historical memory, the recognition of the environment, and critical development are all contemplated.
For St. George’s Day, every year the Masia d'en Cabanyes becomes the stage for writers, poets and poetesses, friends of humanities and poetry, for a shared and chain verse poetry reading. A tribute to liberal arts and a reminder in memoriam of the poet Manuel de Cabanyes.
In the fall, the CIRMAC organizes the Arts and Nature Festival. A festive day with cultural and educational offerings. Under the premise "we can all be artists for a day" everyone is invited to celebrate artistic expression in all its facets through workshops, stories, magic, dance ... Coinciding with the start of the school year, it has already become a point of reference in the Masia’s gardens and a meeting point for families who can enjoy Vilanova i la Geltrú’s cultural heritage. The festival also includes an element of solidarity. Families who help families by committing to social projects where the rights of boys and girls are central.
The Cabanyes DynastyManuel de Cabanyes i Ballester (1808 – 1833)
Born in Vilanova i la Geltrú on 27 January, 1808, he studied Philosophy at Cervera University. Manuel de Cabanyes was a forefather of Romanticism in Catalonia, even before the movement reached the country. His literary work shows a strong grasp of the classics and of ancient and modern universal history, a wide-ranging intellectual curiosity. Always a non-conformist, with "a passion decided by truth and justice and a burning desire to know", as defined by his teacher, Joan Corominas. He wrote in Spanish that, at the time, was the cultured language, although he himself said that it was an imposed language because it wasn’t his own. During his lifetime he only published one book containing 13 poems entitled “Preludios de mi Lira” ("Preludes of my Lira"); his favorite themes were freedom, friendship, love and death, although his best poems are the ones that speak of his feelings. A polyglot and an innovator, he used to imitate Latin syntax by placing the verb at the end of the sentence. He died prematurely of tuberculosis at the age of 25 in his room at the Masia that is still preserved today the way he left it.
Josep Anton de Cabanyes (1797 – 1852)
He worked in the family business of exporting wines and spirits. He was a learned, multilingual man who traveled all over Europe. There he discovered Romanticism and liberalism. In addition, he cultivated poetry, prose, travel, translation and music. He was a merchant and patron. First born son of Llorenç de Cabanyes Fuster and Caterina Ballester i Cabanyers, he was the brother of the Romantic poet Manuel de Cabanyes, and the painter Joaquim de Cabanyes. He was also a great collector of books and paintings, largely acquired during the seven years of preparation he had around various spots in Europe doing international trade training, and which are kept in the Masia d'en Cabanyes Library. Married to Josepa de Olzinelles i Romero in 1836, he had seven children, the oldest of which was Llorenç de Cabanyes and Olzinelles. The family, going through convulsive times in Vilanova and Barcelona, decided to embark for Mallorca; they remained there five days short of two years, returning to Vilanova on 16 October, 1839. His wife’s death while giving birth to their seventh child in 1844 drove him to depression and he spent more time in La Granada, than in Vilanova. He died in Vilanova in 1852, but was buried in La Granada.
Joaquim de Cabanyes i Ballester (1799 – 1876)
Born into a wealthy family with a strong artistic tradition, he was the brother of the poet Manuel de Cabanyes. His artistic side was developed in tandem with his military career. As was customary at the time, he entered the Royal College of Artillery in Segovia as a cadet, and was subsequently posted in different places such as Barcelona, Mahon and Valencia. He participated in the Carlist war, in the war in Morocco under the orders of General Prim and was promoted, on merit, to the rank of colonel. He married a Valencian noblewoman and had no offspring. When he retired from his activity as a Lieutenant Colonel, he took up painting. He learned under the influence of Baron Taylor i Villaamil and the masterful accompaniment of his friend the painter Ramon Martí Alsina. He painted watercolors but, above all oils, on a small format panels, landscapes and seascapes of the vicinity where he lived. He was appointed to academic, devoting himself fully to this institution until his death.
Alexandre de Cabanyes i Marquès (1877 – 1972)
Son of a family of artists, great nephew of the Romantic poet Manuel de Cabanyes and his father, Llorenç de Cabanyes and Olzinelles, also a painter and translator of Molière, he devoted himself fully to art at the Masia where he lived. A participant in the social gatherings at Els Quatre Gats, he considered himself "the last Modernista", not only from the artistic or pictorial standpoint but as a philosophy of life, as a choice made from freedom. He was the last inhabitant of the Masia d'en Cabanyes and thanks to him it has been preserved with his relics just as we see it today. He lived in Paris when the city was the center of the artistic Vanguard. His painting style was post-Impressionist and he remained faithful to it even when the style was already out of fashion. A great nature lover, he painted seascapes of a long-gone world, consequently achieving a social value. A vital and optimistic man, his thick, brave brushstrokes, his dynamism and his strength are unmistakable. He had approximately 40 solo exhibitions. In 1972 he received the Insignia of Alfons X the Wise.
Núria de Cabanyes i Ricart (1919 – 1942)
Fruit of the marriage between Alexandre de Cabanyes and Pilar Ricart, she was the only one of the four children who showed artistic abilities like their father. Alexandre de Cabanyes valued and encouraged her natural predisposition and was convinced that she would be the new painter of the family. But unfortunately, her life was cut short by the same disease as the poet Manuel de Cabanyes, dying prematurely at the age of 22. This tragedy deeply affected her father, who would lose his wife the following year. The Masia preserves a very large unfinished painting, where Alexandre portrays a court of angels lifting his daughter Núria up to heaven. Few works by this young vignettist, like the sixty-nine vignettes from L'Auca del Sanatori del Montseny accompanied by their corresponding couplets, have been preserved. She was hospitalized at the Mas Casademunt nursing home, in the Montseny Natural Park, the former Brull anti-tuberculosis sanatorium.