Catalunya 1400

The International Gothic Style

Exhibition from 29 March to 15 July 2012


 Catalonia 1400. The International Gothic Style

This is the first major exhibition on one of the most creative cycles in the history of Catalan art, around the turn of the 15th century. It coincides with the period of European art known as «International Gothic», the result of an exchange and a convergence of different traditions and which is identified with aristocratic or courtly patronage, retrospective in nature and of an aestheticist tendency.

Based on great masterpieces by the most important Catalan artists of all time, such as Lluís Borrassà, Rafael Destorrents, Pere Joan and Bernat Martorell, the exhibition, among other themes, shows the renewal of the miniature; it presents the retable as the distinctive expression of Catalan painting; it highlights the importance of the arrival of European artists in Catalonia with the resulting French influence on Catalan culture, and it gives an overview of the many and varied centres of artistic creation.

Catalonia 1400. The International Gothic Style presents, together, the four panels with narrative scenes from the Retable of Saint George by Bernat Martorell, now in the Louvre, almost certainly from Saint George’s Chapel in the Palau de la Generalitat, along with other complete retables by Lluís Borrassà, Joan Mates, Jaume Ferrer and Martorell.

Also on display are the two main masterpieces of the Catalan Gothic miniature, a type of work that the general public very rarely gets a chance to see: the famous Missal of Saint Eulalia by Rafael Destorrents – which has not left Barcelona Cathedral for many years– and the Ferial Psalter and Book of Hours by Bernat Martorell, conserved in the City of Barcelona Historical Archive.

The exhibition includes at the same time a carefully chosen display of sculptures, items of precious metalwork and embroideries, including the frontal and one of the dalmatics from the Saint George vestments, from Saint George’s Chapel in the Palau de la Generalitat.

Furthermore, some of the discoveries that the MNAC’s Gothic art conservators have made recently will be on show, extending this line of investigation and reinterpretation, the culmination of an important cycle of research into one of the most creative periods of Catalan art.

In short, an exhibition with a new perspective on the period called «International Gothic» and an aesthetic joy characteristic of the finest Catalan art of all time.

  • Opening times and admissions charges at
  • If you show your exhibition or general Museum admission ticket you can benefit from a 5% discount on the exhibition catalogue at the MNAC shop (offer valid until 15 July 2012).