05 February 2020

Poetry in Motion - Xavier Corbero

Hailed as one of the finest contemporary artists from Catalan, Xavier Corbero has left a legacy to his philosophy of creating poetry through the physical arts. His work can be found in galleries and private collections, but he is best known for his public art, an example of which can be found in Broad Street, London. His sculptures were roughly hewn from basalt, jagged, abstract figures that are imposing yet relatable at the same time. 

The Broad Family Public Statue, London, Xavier Corbero 1991

Corbero was the first Spanish student to study at the Central School of Arts & Crafts in London, living and working in France and Switzerland too before returning to his beloved Catalonia. His works can now be seen in galleries across the globe, but perhaps his most significant legacy is his estate in Esplugues de Llobregat on the outskirts of Barcelona.


With colonnades, arches covered in vines and a circular patio with octagonal windows (to create a Kaleidoscopic effect), the house is a minimalist vision of fantasy. This dream was created with form, light, water and fauna rather than gilt and trim. The walls are whitewashed to showcase the objects; a warm feeling is maintained with the use of wood and floor coverings.

But this was not simply a home in the usual sense, but a place to display his lifelong works and for other artists to meet and work. The house has 25 bedrooms and bathrooms, and Corbero regularly invited artists to stay, including the Surrealist, Salvadore Dali.

Although Cobero passed away in 2017, his ode to beauty remains; a poem that took 40 years to complete.