The Gegants return to the UAB in celebration of its 50th anniversary

Els gegants de la UAB

The cultural group Colla gegantera de Molins de Rei recently restored the UAB's Gegants, which were created by artists Esperanša Cases, Montserrat Torres and Pepa Sintes in 1988. The gegants are one of the oldest folkloric figures of the festivals held in many towns of Catalonia.


The UAB Gegants have been restored in celebration of the university's 50th anniversary and once again formed part of the festivities of the Festa Major, held on 9 November. Jaume Coma, Gerard Pouget, Victor Llangostera, Joan Parellada, Miquel Burgès and other members of the cultural group “Colla gegantera de Molins de Rei” were in charge of restoring the giant figures. They were also the ones to parade and make the giants dance at the Festa Major.

In 1987, with the aim of making the campus a diverse place in which extra-academic activities could be held, the UAB announced a competition to create giant figures which could represent the institutional values of the university. Sculptor Esperança Cases, painter Montserrat Torres and potter Pepa Sintes won the competition and created the Gegants de la Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.
The three artists presented a design in which the woman giant represented the goddess of wisdom Athenea and the man giant symbolised the figure of a professor. They worked on the creation of the giants from November 1987 to May 1988 in a workshop located close to the Faculty of Science. To build the figures they used a tonne of clay and what is known as “ànimes”, pieces of bricks, cardboard, gravel, wood and other material to make the clay a stronger material.
The debut of the Gegants at the Festa Major 1988 was a total success. The Gegants and also the “big-headed” figures, Capgrossos, arrived to the Rectorat building in a lorry and caused quite a stir. Minutes later, however, everyone set out on a parade towards the Faculty of Science which included the Capgrossos, Gegants and members of the UAB's theatre group.


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