Inviting you to take a Romanesque journey

More than a millenium before the birth of the European Union, a style of architecture and art spread across the continent. It was called Romanesque and it emerged almost simultaneously in Spain, France, Italy, and Germany with sufficient unity to be considered Europe’s first common international art style.

Celebrating this achievement, our Cultural Institute just has launched launch a new, virtual exhibition, called “Origins of Romanesque: the Birth of Europe.” Curated by the Santa María la Real Foundation, it presents 26 iconic expressions of Romanesque beauty, explaining their social, political and cultural context. More than 100 guests attended the launch event in Madrid, featuring the president of the Foundation, José María Perez Peridis and the President of National Heritage as speakers.

Monestaries and abbeys led the way in spreading Romanesque constructions. In Spain, Romanesque cathedrals, churches, monasteries, cloisters and chapels mark the famed Camino de Santiago pilgrammage route.

Elsewhere in Europe, abbeys in Fulda, Lorsch, St. Gallen and Bobbio arose in the 11th century and became beacons for the new style, as did Europe’s first universities, beginning with Bologna in 1088.

Beside exploring Romanesque buildings, the new online exhibition includes drawings, photographs, films and video about Romanesque Europe.

We hope this present exhibition is only the first of a series, exploring other a series of exhibitions on life and art in Europe from Roman to modern times. Our goal is help everyone learn about and enjoy the beauties from the past.