Eliana Tomaz

Azulejos.

Eliana Tomaz1 Comment
Azulejo (Tile in English) is a form of art which was introduced to Portugal and Spain by the Moors late 15th Century. The word Azulejo is derived from the Arabic “Al Zulay” which means “polished stone”.

For over 5 Centuries, Azulejos have been decorating all types of spaces in Iberia. They are the canvas to Portuguese Art and the wallpaper to domestic spaces.

A bench at the Serralves Foundation Garden embellished with embossed, yet simple pattern.


Another bench by the river in Coimbra, home to one of the oldest Universities in Europe.

The building's eye.

More than a simple window, this is a very important architectural feature in the Iberian architecture, all Mediterranean countries actually) – The Veranda, a space where people gather to socialize and to watch who‘s passing by…

Two distinct façades, both highly decorated with azulejos: on the right a Pombaline Style building and on the left a Modern interpretation in Portuguese architecture.

I like the way the architectural curve brings so much movement to this symmetric façade.

Here, Álvaro Siza dresses several façades with highly polished Azulejos, contrasting and balancing very gracefully the building's concrete body.

And here, Rem Koolhaas reinterprets the Azulejos as a story telling canvas to adorn Casa da Musica.

When Azulejos are used in different ways:
- In Portugal By Pedrita
- In Spain By Gaudí


{Little side note - When I was preparing this post I came across to this article on the Economist which was published a few days ago. Good coincidence.}