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A 20-metre-long whale skeleton welcomes visitors at Barcelona’s new Blue Space

The Museu Blau (Blue Museum) is part of Barcelona’s Natural History Museum, divided into four different locations. It is housed in a futurist blue triangular building by Herzog & De Meuron, at the Forum Park. Blue Space will have a permanent zoology exhibition called “Planet Life”, focusing on the Gaia theory and the link between the Earth and natural life. The 19th century buildings at the Ciutadella Park will be renovated and will host other parts of the Natural History Museum.


12 July 2011 09:28 PM



Barcelona (ACN).- The historic whale skeleton from the Natural History Museum was put on public display again this Tuesday, but in a new location. The 20-metre-long whale is hanging over the visitors entrance stairwell of the Blue Museum (Museu Blau), which is part of Barcelona\u2019s Natural History Museum, split into four locations throughout the city and managed by Barcelona\u2019s Town Hall. The skeleton weighs 1 tone and dates from 1862. It belonged to a whale that was beached in the Costa Brava. The visitor's entrance has been closed since July 1st to hang the whale skeleton, a complex process that has managed to display the animal in a more natural position than its previous location. The Blue Museum is located within a futuristic blue triangle, the Forum building, designed by Pritzker-prize-winning architects Herzog & De Meuron for the 2004 Universal Forum of Cultures, held in Barcelona. The building will host a permanent zoological exhibition, as well as \u201Claboratories of life\u201D, which will explain some aspects of nature having a key role in evolution. In addition, the building has a large theatre, is next to a conference centre and is located in a new business and urban area along the coast, known as the Forum and Diagonal Mar.

After some years of waiting for a permanent use, the blue triangle is fully functioning. It will display a 3,000 square metre permanent exhibition called \u201CPlanet Life\u201D, which explains the Gaia theory, focusing on the evolution of Earth and biological life. The exhibition is formed by collections from the former Zoology Museum, located at the Castell dels Tres Dragons (the Three Dragons\u2019 Castle), an Art-Nouveau pavilion built for the 1888 Barcelona Universal Exhibition at the Ciutadella Park. Now, the old building is being renovated and will host research and scientific activities in the future. It will be part of the new Barcelona Natural History Museum, formed by this pavilion, the Blue Museum, the Martorell Museum (also in the Ciutadella Park and hosted geological collections) and Montjuïc\u2019s Botanical Gardens and Institute. 

This galaxy of centres that will form Barcelona\u2019s Natural History Museum are also the embryo for Catalonia\u2019s National Museum of Natural Sciences, which will  probably be built in the Ciutadella Park, according to Barcelona\u2019s Deputy Mayor for Culture, Knowledge, Creativity and Innovation, Jaume Ciurana. Ciurana also unveiled that within the next few weeks, a public administration consortium will be formed to guarantee the needed funds for the first years of Catalonia\u2019s National Science Museum.


  • The whale skeleton hanging over the visitor entrance (by T. Bardia)

  • The whale skeleton hanging over the visitor entrance (by T. Bardia)