Barcelona Head, 1987

Object, 108 x 54 x 32 cm

The American artist Roy Lichtenstein designed the sculpture Barcelona Head in 1991, having been commissioned by the City Council on the occasion of the Olympic Games of 1992. The 14-metre-high work was installed in the Passeig de Colom, at one end of Port Vell. This was realised by the sculptor Diego Delgado and Lichtenstein’s maquette is part of the MACBA Collection. The bright colours – white, red, blue, yellow and black – and brushstrokes that evoke the visual language of comics are characteristic of the style of the artist. Against a background of red dots in relief, we glimpse a face or head with pouting lips and huge eyelashes. The form of the sculpture seems to have emerged out of the free and colourful brushstrokes.

From the eighties, Lichtenstein translated his brushstroke into three dimensions using maquettes and sculptures of medium or monumental scale. In this sense, Barcelona Head is part of a series of works that the artist called ‘brushstrokes’. Lichtenstein saw these sculptures, composed of voluminous brushstrokes, as ‘a three-dimensional tribute to painting’. Situated within mainstream Pop art and influenced by the aesthetics of the comic world, the work is a tribute to the city and its most famous architect, Antoni Gaudí. In fact, the artist covered parts of the work with mosaic in a clear reference to the universe of Gaudí.


Technical details

Original title:
Barcelona Head
Registration number:
Lichtenstein, Roy
Date created:
Date acquired:
MACBA Collection. Barcelona City Council long-term
Object type:
Polychromed wood
108 x 54 x 32 cm (height x width x depth)
MACBA Collection. Barcelona City Council long-term loan
© Roy Lichtenstein Foundation, VEGAP, Barcelona
It has accessibility resources:

The MACBA Collection features Catalan, Spanish and international art and, although it includes works from the 1920s onwards, its primary focus is on the period between the 1960s and the present.

For more information on the work or the artist, please consult MACBA's Library. To request a loan of the work, please write to colleccio [at] macba.cat.

If you need a high resolution image of the work, you must submit an image loan request.