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Leisure and Culture

9 Famous Catalans

young salvador dali
Written by Paula

There are many talented individuals in Catalonia who have reached great fame and popularity by mastering their particular skills. 

From award-winning chefs to amazingly talented architects, here is an overview with some of the most famous Catalans in history.

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Famous people from Barcelona Spain

Ferran Adriá

Ferran Adrià Acosta is a Spanish chef born in Barcelona. He is considered by many as the best chef in the world. This multi-award winning chef was one of the owners and head chef of one of the most famous restaurants in the history of Spain, El Bulli.

chef cooking

Photo via Pixabay

Together with his brother Albert Adrià, who received the World’s Best Pastry Chef award in 2015, he has opened a number of popular restaurant in Barcelona, almost all of them around Carrer de Blai, in Poble Sec.

The most popular of the restaurants is Tickets, which is considered to be one of the 50 best restaurants in the world.

There is also Pataka, which serves a mix of Japanese and Peruvian cuisine, Bodega 1900, which offers inspired Catalan cuisine, and Hoja Santa, both serving Mexican food.

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Joan Manuel Serrat

Joan Manuel Serrat Teresa is a singer, songwriter, composer, actor, musician, and poet. He is one of Catalonia’s most famous artists, having recorded more than 50 albums between 1965 and 2015.

music panel

Photo via Pixabay

Some of the most popular songs by Serrat include “Poema de Amor”, “La Fiesta”, “Tu nombre me sabe a hierba”, and “Hijo de luz y de la sombra”. Serrat has recorded a number of duets with famous musical artists including Alejandro Sanz, Joaquín Sabina, Ana Belén, and Raphael.

Salvador Dalí

Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech was born in Figueres on May 11th, 1904. Not only famous in Spain, Salvador Dalí is one of the most well-known artists in the world.

painting by salvador dali

Photo via Pixabay

This Surrealist master has created such famous paintings as The Persistency of Memory (1931), Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee around a Pomegranate a Second Before Awakening (1944), and Swans Reflecting Elephants (1937).

The artists also created sculptures such as Lobster Phone (1936) and Mae West Lips Sofa (1937) and collaborated with Luis Buñuel in the creation of the film Un Chien Andalou (1929).

Related article: The Adriá Brothers and the Poble Sec Neighborhood

Joan Miró

Joan Miró i Ferrera was a famous painter, sculptor, and ceramicist, considered as one of the greatest names in Surrealism in all of history.

Joan miro

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

The artist grew up in the center of Barcelona, in the charming and inspiring Gothic neighborhood, and managed to get his own first solo exhibition at the age of 25. Though his work was not initially appreciated, Miró was not deterred.

Soon after, he moved to France and, inspired by the cubist and surrealist movements he discovered abroad, he was able to achieve great fame, creating numerous pieces that are recognized all over the world, such as The Farm (1921), Dog Barking at the Moon (1926), Dona I Ocell (1982), and Moon Bird (1966).

Antoni Gaudí

Born on the 25th of June of 1878, Antoni Gaudí i Cornet is known worldwide as the most famous name in the Catalan Modernist Movement.

work by antoni gaudi

Photo via Pixabay

Influenced by nature and religion, Gaudí created the most visited touristic sites in Barcelona such as Sagrada Família, Casa Batlló, Casa Milà/La Pedrera, Park Güell.

The artists works are so undeniably inspired, that UNESCO has named many of them as World Heritage Sites.

Related article: Famous Catalan Artists

Carmen Amaya

Carmen Amaya was a Flamenco dancer, singer and songwriter born in Girona. Being of Romanian origin, Amaya became known as the greatest Spanish gypsy of her generation and one of the most famous names in Flamenco dancing of all time.

flamenco dancer

Photo via Pixabay

At a time that Flamenco was dominated by men, Amaya not only managed to learn but master the moves, becoming one of the fastest dancers of the style.

Pep Guardiola

Josep “Pep” Guardiola i Sala was born on the 18th of January of 1971 in Santpedor. Guardiola is most famously known for his years as soccer player, having played for Barceloa, Rome, Brecia, Al-Ahli, and Dorados de Sinaloa.

pep guardiola

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

When he retired as he player, he decided to become a soccer manager, starting with Barcelona B. Guardiola had a lot of success in his coaching carreer, leading his team to victory countless times, and eventually receiving awards and distinctions for his work with Barcelona.

In 2013, Guardiola started managing Bayer Munich, and later, in 2016, Manchester City. Pep Guardiola is considered one of the best managers of his generation.

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Montserrat Caballé

Montserrat Caballé is a soprano opera singer who has performed works by names such as Rossini, Verdi and Donizetti.

In 1987, Caballé performed “Barcelona” with British singer Freddie Mercury, created as the theme song for Barcelona’s 1992 Summer Olympics.

This performance made the opera singer famous worldwide. She is considered as one of the great treasures of Barcelona.

opera theater

Photo via Pixabay

Úrsula Corberó

Úrsula Corberó Delgado is a Spanish model, but you will probably know and remember her from her acting in the famous series on Netflix La Casa de Papel (Money Heist). She has played in other series and films before. 

Úrsula was born in Barcelona and grew up in a small town in Catalonia. She is also a good dancer and known for her fashion choices.

Do you know any of these celebrities born in Barcelona?
Tell us about your favourite Barcelona actors or other famous Catalans!

About the author


Paula is an experienced content writer, translator and editor.

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