Casa Lleó i Morera: a Modernist Jewel of Barcelona

Posted on 14 October 2013 in Art & Architecture, Barcelona, always!

Casa Lleó i Morera remained in the hands of the family until 1943, when it was sold to the Sociedad Mercantil Bilbao, an insurance company which, in turn, sold it to the Mutualidad General de Previsión Social de la Abogacía de Madrid in 1983. It was later transferred to Grupo Planeta.

It is one of the buildings by the masters of modernist architecture – Gaudí, Puig i Cadafalch, Domènech i Montaner – which, together with Casa Batlló and Casa Amatller, make up what is known today as Barcelona’s Block of Discord.

Sculptures at the Casa Lleó i Morera

Sculptures at the Casa Lleó i Morera

The fact that the family looked after the property through three generations meant good news for the upkeep of the most distinctive decorative features of the building’s interior: the delicate ornamental features inspired by winding lines and nature, and realized through the use of diverse mediums and materials, thanks to the participation of multiple master craftsmen.

In 2006, Grup Núñez i Navarro acquired Casa Lleó i Morera. Over the course of the next two years, a special team worked on developing a sound plan and timeline for the building’s renovation and conservation, based on a careful artistic study of the its design, a structural analysis of its interior, and a chromatic examination of its façade.

Most tasks within this phase were focused on the building’s façade, back patio, courtyard-facing rooms, common areas, and offices.

The common areas of the Casa Lleó i Morera include the staircase, the first floor, and the lobbies and vestibules spread on different floors of the building. They were found to be in generally good condition, such that the tasks associated with their restoration could focus exclusively on the refurbishing of damaged mosaics, mostly on stairwell landings and other highly traversed areas.

Entry at the Casa Lleó i Morera

Entry at the Casa Lleó i Morera

Most of the restoration work was carried out within Casa Lleó i Morera’s interior. The parquet and mosaic floors had to be restored by professionals specially trained in the Fine Arts. Similarly, the building’s bathrooms were completely renovated, including the mosaics that adorn them and which showed significant damage due to the passing of time.

When the Lleó i Morera family lived in the house, they spent most of their time on the mezzanine. To adapt this space to its new function, Núñez i Navarro conducted an exhaustive study of the tasks to be carried out, in terms of lighting, sound, safety, and design, all in accordance with the property’s structural characteristics. The company also made sure to carefully supervise the restoration of the building’s most unique features, like the parquet flooring, glassworks, woodcarvings, and paintings.

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