The Chairs of Besalu




High Chair – Besalu, Spain

Sauntering through the medieval stone walls of Besalu, Spain, was a transport back in time.  All my thoughts about old Spain flew away as I literally stood on the ground about which I’ve read in history books.  My romantic self loved the high walls, stone roads and old doors and windows.  That romantic self also dreamed about living in this ancient, artistic city filled with the smells of cuisine, the air vibrating with conversations of the locals in Catalon.  We sat in a central square, pulling up chairs beneath umbrellas for shade, ordered our beers and sat silent, immersing ourselves into the world of Besalu.

After a sweet respite soaking in the atmosphere we paid, took our leave and rambled on through more streets whereupon we happened upon …. chairs.  Chairs attached to walls. chairs in odd places.




Two Chairs – Besalu, Spain

A plaque on the wall told us these are the Chairs of Career Rocafort.  Two artists, one from Italy and one from Girona.  The creator of this work, Ester Baulida, says “these chairs symbolize the difficulties that humanity has in accomplishing its aims and resolving the problems it has to confront.”

In searching for information about this I found interesting tidbits from other bloggers that all ran on a similar vein.  Here’s what one said: “Another highlight of the museum was the chairs. These pieces of furniture were nailed long ago to the walls of the dwellings from the outside with legs. In such an interesting way, the townspeople struggled with dark forces in the Middle Ages. Chairs were nailed to sit on them to catch the spirit (in particular, witches) flying over the city. If there are chairs outside, why should she climb into the house? On the other hand, the furniture is nailed so that you can not sit on it, and so there was no reason to linger among people.”

Well, turns out the chairs have nothing to do with witches, unless one interprets that the chairs symbolize politicians … then, wait a minute….!  Ha!



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