Conference on Regionalist Architecture awakens public interest and promotes its dissemination and recovery

Hundreds of people have participated in the activities that have highlighted both the conclusions of new studies and the most unique buildings that mark the physiognomy of Alcalá. The conference has served to advance the knowledge and protection of local culture and heritage.

The ‘I Conference Alcalá de Guadaíra and regionalist architecture’ have been developed “with such a success of participation that have demonstrated the interest in deepening this part of our identity, which encourages us to continue with this cycle of heritage”. This has been advanced by the head of the area of Identity of the City Council alcalareño, Christopher Rivas, who has taken stock of this initiative that has been developed in recent weeks and that arose “with the aim of highlighting the regionalist design, a hallmark of urban identity of the city with many public and private buildings, on the occasion of the centenary of these buildings belonging to this artistic trend in Andalusian architecture, especially between the decades of the 20 and 30 of the last century.

Rivas has specified that hundreds of people have participated in the different initiatives (guided tour, conferences and documentary with discussion) highlighting a double value for its continuity. In addition to this public interest, “this cycle allows us to learn about new studies by experts and deepen their research on our recent past, on our urban planning, culture and heritage” because “the more we know about it, the better we will be able to protect it, preserve it and enhance its value”. “It is impossible to think of Alcalá de Guadaíra, in our identity as a city, without taking into account such unique buildings as the Casa de la Cultura, the Teatro Gutiérrez de Alba or the Hotel Oromana. In fact, Rivas pointed out – this is what we are doing with the rehabilitation of Villa Esperanza, the work of Juan Talavera, and the architect’s own house, on Bailén Street”.

“If there is a movement with great presence in Alcalá – he continued – and that identifies how we are, it is regionalism, fundamentally by the hand of Juan Talavera, but also by other architects of this trend such as José Espiau or Aníbal González”. Thus, together with a greater knowledge of the public buildings of this generation of architects (also the Pedro Gutiérrez school, the San Francisco de Paula training center, the old Civil Guard barracks, or the tower of the Santiago Church, among others), some studies have been revealing the signature of regionalism in private buildings, such as the old Casino building in the Plaza de Cervantes, for example, and point to others with similar characteristics in the streets Ntra. Sra. del Águila, Herreros, Antonio Mairena or the Calderón Ponce neighborhood.

“We have a lot to discover and we are not only aware of it from the government, but also from the citizens themselves.” He thanked the collaboration of the professionals who participated in the activities, Juan Hurtado and Vicente Maestre in the guided tour, also providing experiences and experiences that enrich the vision of our culture from a more human point of view, or the researchers Rocío Paneque Sánchez-Toscano and Paloma Castillo González for their lectures, interesting and very informative. Also to Paco Ortiz, director of the documentary film ‘Aníbal’, about the life and work of the architect Aníbal González, for his willingness to facilitate a pleasant discussion after the screening.

The delegate also thanked the Photographic Association of Alcalá (AFA) for their contribution to the viewing of images on regionalism in Alcalá, and especially “the citizens, whose good reception has given a boost to the importance not only to the dissemination of local heritage, but also to the participation and involvement of the local people in this project.