A glimpse into Valencian history and its future. When visiting Valencia it is crucial that you ensure the outstanding Bombas Gens is a part of your itinerary. The former water pump factory can be found near the heart of Valencia, a short walk from El Carmen. With the impressive architecture representing the past and the future of the city, you cannot give this unique place a miss!
The building itself is an important part of Valencian history as it was a crucial venue during the Spanish Civil War, during that time period the Republicans have had utilised the factory for the production of bombs. In fact, there is a bomb shelter located in the courtyard of the gallery whose insides have a shattering resemblance to the gas chambers of Auschwitz in Poland. The essence and feeling of the place allow you to imagine the life of fear the people of Valencia endured during that era.
The dark backstory of the building doesn’t end there, in 1991 the building was abandoned and experienced fires and general decay, due to the lack of interest in the preservation of it from the City. However, despite its tragic history, the future of Bombas Gens seems brighter than ever before.
In 2014 Fundació Per Amor a l’Art has taken the venue under its wing and transformed it into a youth centre and art gallery. The building serves as the headquarter for the charitable activities of the foundation which is has a unique interest in photography and abstract language, evident upon visiting.
For more information about the Irma Blank exposition on language click here.
From January 2022 until May 15th Bombas Gens continues “Sculpting Reality” with the second part of its exhibition, Elephant Room/Rodeo Drive. It is the sequel of the documentary-style photography that can be found in the Per Amor a l’Art Collection. The exhibition is a journey back in time to experience the evolution of this genre. The special feature of the collection is the contrast between the photography of high-profile personalities, such as Marilyn Monroe, and ordinary people walking down iconic Rodeo Drive. The magic of these intimate moments being captured allows the viewer to imagine the possible backstories of the photographed individuals and experience the different emotions enclosed within.
The exhibition’s variety of black and white pieces and ones with a flare of colour create a reflective feeling and outlook on our daily lives. The design of Bombas Gens aids you in continuing your journey of mindfulness in its beautiful gardens, which also feature a medieval wine cellar and an iconic water feature that represents the rivers of Valencia.
At the end of the day, Bombas Gens is much more than an art gallery, a foundation, or a building. It is a representation of Valencia’s past and a spark of hope for its future.
Report and photos by Nicole Maka-Sprawa
Article and photos copyright Nicole Maka-Sprawa/ ‘24/7 Valencia’
ADDRESS: AVENIDA BURJASSOT 54,
MON-TUES – CLOSED
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday: from 11am to 2pm and from 4pm to 7pm.