The Magic Fountain

The Magic Fountain was created by Carlos Buigas for the Universal Expo of 1929.


When work on the Great Universal Exhibition of 1929 was well under way, the organizers felt that it needed that "something" special to made it a cut above the rest. That was when Carlos Buigas submitted his project for a "colossal, daring and costly piece of work".

On 18 June 1928, before the Executive Committee of the Exhibition, the young engineer presented the 460 maps and 70 large drawings, materializing the dreams that his expertise was capable of bringing to life. The project was so surprising and dazzling that it was even branded as madness by some of those present.

In less than a year, more than 3,000 workers made young Buigas's dream come true, flooding the Great Avenue that was to be the main thoroughfare of the Exhibition with light, water and color.

Buigas's project heralded the discovery of a new art, the art of light. Light would no longer be used only to illuminate the night, but rather to embellish it too. Above all, he discovered that the light should be concentrated so as to avoid larger beams obscuring smaller ones. Buigas conceived an opaque and independent light, one that could be part of the whole without detracting from the immediate effect.

To the delight of all, this project gave birth to the four cascades (and others which were later removed) and the large jet, the Luminous Fountain or the Magic Fountain, as it is now known – the only major works of water, light and color that remain to this day.


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