Around 200 social, economic, cultural, and academic entities joined forces in a manifesto to give support to Barcelona’s campaign to bring the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to the Catalan capital. The manifesto was read by the Catalan actor Josep Maria Pou at the Faculty of Medicine at Barcelona University on Monday. The event also featured the Spanish health minister, Dolors Montserrat, the Catalan health minister, Antoni Comín, and other authorities. The manifesto says that Barcelona “wants to be and can be a great headquarters” for the EMA, among other reasons because of its scientific, technologic, and industrial potential” and because “it enjoys maximum institutional, civil, and social support”. According to the signatories, Barcelona is also ideal because of how the city faces great challenges with excitement and conviction like the successful celebration of the Olympic Games in Barcelona 25 years ago.
A court in Madrid has ordered that the body of surrealist painter Salvador Dalí be exhumed to provide genetic samples in a paternity lawsuit. A Tarot card reader from Girona, Maria Pilar Abel, claims she is the biological daughter of the famous Catalan artist. According to Abel, Dalí met her mother in the 1950s when she worked for a family that often spent summers in Cadaqués, close to the painter’s home. The pair “had a friendship that developed into clandestine love,” claim the court documents filed by Abel.
Has Spanish government ever used the police to investigate pro-independence leaders in order to discredit their movement? A now-retired Spanish police inspector implies so. José Manuel Villarejo admitted that “some politicians have tried to use police for political aims” in an interview to TV program ‘Salvados’ on Sunday. Talking about the current head of Spanish police, Ignacio Cosidó, Villarejo suggested that he was working under the instruction of the Spanish Vice President, Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría. “He boasted that he did not trust the secretary of State or the minister of Home Affairs and that he was in touch directly with the Spanish vice-president."
“It is absurd to take pro-independence politicians to court, because it only fuels support for independence. It looks like the State wants the conflict,” said German politician Bernhard Von Grünberg incredulously in an interview with the CNA. Von Grünberg advocates Europe’s role in the resolution of the stalemate between Catalonia and Spain, a state, which according to him, is getting closer and closer to an authoritarian system. “As European democrats we cannot look the other way with the excuse that we already have enough conflicts, and just watch while Spain reverts to an authoritarian system,” said the German Socialist, who has been MP in the Land of North Rhine Westphalia for 12 years and was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic. “We need a more democratic Europe,” Von Grünberg determined. He takes the stance that the lack of historical memory in Spain is one of the reasons for the current political deadlock. Von Grünberg is also president of the rental law association of his land (German federal district). He supports the local rental law association in Barcelona to help create a more attractive legal framework for rental housing in Spain in order to promote more equal social and economic growth in Europe. On Wednesday, June 28, he will receive an award from APPEC, the Association of Catalan Periodicals, in Barcelona for his social and political involvement.
Spanish president Mariano Rajoy is deaf to all talk of Spain as a plurinational state. Rejecting the socialist opposition’s acceptance of the term “plurinational” to describe Spain, on Friday Rajoy went only as far as admitting that the State includes "nationalities and regions" and suggested that "it makes no sense to dwell on it." "I am not in favour of the term plurinational; it calls for an explanation of what it means. I favour something encapsulated in the Constitution that is well-understood, in Spain there are nationalities and regions, it is what was agreed at the time," he said.
Some say that Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dalí admired each other’s work. Others say they had a rather tense relationship. In any case, the influence of both artists on the places where they worked is indisputable. Northern Catalonia is presenting two exhibitions, which show the border-crossing connection between the art of these two masters and the cities of the Roselló region where they painted. Thus, the Museum of Modern Art of Ceret has opened the exhibition 'Dalí: Eureka', with more than 300 pieces by the famous Catalan artist that reveal how science influenced him. The exhibition includes 25 paintings loaned by museums and private collections as well as objects, drawings, and manuscripts by the artist himself as well as works by Man Ray, Buñuel, and Robert Descharnes. Dalí was interested in a range of scientific disciplines, from astrophysics through genetics and psychoanalysis to the theory of relativity. An understanding of this interest helps reveal new aspects of the artist’s work. Perpignan, perhaps the most well known city in Northern Catalonia, on the French side of the Pyrenees, has recently seen the reopening of the Hyacinthe Rigaud Museum of Art with an exhibition titled “Picasso-Perpinyà, An Intimate Circle, 1953-1955” which reviews the artist’s influence on the city. The exhibit gathers more than 100 works and documents, among them photographs and unedited videos that are testimony to the artist’s relationship with Perpignan.
Up to 37 designers and fashion brands reveal the most popular fashion trends in Barcelona. The 20th edition of the 080 Barcelona Fashion opened on Monday with children’s clothing brands Bóboli and Little Creative Factory first on the catwalk, followed by the designs of Daniel Rosa and Krizia Robustella. Until June 30, visitors will be able to enjoy the latest work by Catalan designers in one of the most iconic venues in the city, the modernist Hospital de Sant Pau. "We support the 080 because it is a very effective way to promote the sector," said Business and Knowledge Minister Jordi Baiget.
The sharing economy should be seen as an opportunity but one that needs European regulation, said MEP Nicola Danti in a press conference in Barcelona on Monday. The MEP’s statements come amid a controversial dispute between Barcelona’s city government and Airbnb, the online platform for renting tourist apartments. The vice president of the EU’s Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee chose the Catalan capital as the place to explain a European Parliament resolution on the collaborative economy. “Cities have to play an important role and it’s crucial that online platforms also take on responsibilities,” he said. According to Danti, what is needed is common regulation that distinguishes between “peers” and “professionals” and assures sustainable growth of large and small platforms in Europe. Asked about the online service providers Uber and Airbnb, Danti defended them as “creative” and “positive” for the sharing economy, but argued that they need regulation to assure fair competition. “Uber is a transport service, this is clear, and not just a digital service, so they have to respond to the same fiscal and consumer regulations as local services in the sector,” he said, adding: “If I paid a tourist tax in the hotel this morning, Airbnb should do the same.”.