Art in the Principality of Andorra

Andorra, wait, what? Is that even a country? Yes. Andorra is a country. Like the Vatican City landlocked within Rome. Andorra is a micronation landlocked between Spain and France. During my Winter Wonderland 2018 trip. I took a day trip from Barcelona to visit the landlocked country.

 

 

From YouTube videos and reviews online, Andorra was painted as a country that was not worth visiting. Some people event went as far as to suggest that you should only visit it, if your aim is to visit every country in Europe. Well, I spent one day there, and would I do it again? Yes. Why not? Snowboarding lessons have been halted, when they restart I hope to take a snowboarding trip there, and revisit some of the art work that I mention in this post. 

 

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Getting there

Travel in and out of Andorra’s capital, Andorra la Vela was very easy and straight forward. I brought my ticket online the night before. There were not many travel companies that provided direct travel to Andorra from Barcelona. So I decided to travel with ALSA, one of the more local bus companies.  A return ticket cost me £32.92 and the journey was 3hr 15min.

 

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 7 Poetes by Jaume Plensa

This was the first work of art I saw. Each of the seven figures represent the seven parishes in Andorra. When googling things to do prior to this day trip, this didn’t really take my fancy. However when I saw it, I was taken aback. Primarily because I didn’t expect to see it. Also because there is always something special about seeing something online, and then being able to see it with your own two eyes. The 7 Poetes blended in with the scenery. I say that because I was only able to count six. Watch my YouTube video to see my initial reaction. During the night the 7 men light up.

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Each figure was facing a different direction. Looking back, it would be interesting to know if each figure was positioned to face the Parish it represented.

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Paris Bridge

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My least favourite out of everything. Simply because it wasn’t anything fancy. The name ‘Paris Bridge’ invokes more of a feeling than the bridge itself. If you ever get the chance to walk across it you will understand exactly what I mean.  When I think of Paris, I think elegance, cold, sophisticated, delicate and strong. Paris Bridge was more cold and strong. Whilst it did serve its purpose. It was not comparable to actual French monuments. i.e. the Eiffel tower and the Louvre. The name Paris Bridge sets that expectation in your head, so you can’t blame me for being slightly underwhelmed when I saw it. The water underneath is okay.

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Paris Bridge can be seen from a distance, so I imagine many people don’t take the effort too get any closer. I crossed Paris Bridge on route to my next stop in Andorra. Pont dels Escalla.

 

Pont dels Escalls    (Escalls Bridge)

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Before we go any where else, I feel the need to  highlight what art is. Some of you may be thinking it’s just a bridge. If Paris Bridge is anything to go by, why is this bridge so special?

art1

/ɑːt/

noun

noun: art; plural noun: arts; plural noun: the arts

1.

the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power.

 

 

The reason why Pont dels Escalls is so special is because of how overwhelming it is. Being on the Bridge sends so many of you senses into a frenzy. Your sense of sight, smell and hearing are sent into a sensory overload. It’s fair to say I’ve never had anything make me feel the way this Bridge did. Hear me out. The smell: it was so damp, a really weird mix of mould and freshness. As I took a deep breath in, I felt every single one of my olfactory nerves light up. My brain was also trying to figure out if I’d ever smelt anything like it before. Tactile, for I while I was scared, holding onto the cold bars did not do much to alleviate this. People always ask me if I ever get scared traveling alone. To tell you the truth I don’t. But being at Pont dels Escalls was certainly the most fearful I have ever been during my Winter Wonderland 2018 trip. Acoustically, I couldn’t here myself think. I’m happy I vlogged my experience because at the time I’m sure I could not here what I was saying.

 

 

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