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Untapped Cities - City Diaries by Lapin - Mercat dels Encants Barcelona

Mercat dels Encants is one of the oldest markets in Europe. Certain references set its origin in the fourteenth century, being a testimony of the commercial dynamic of Barcelona.

When you start walking around this flea market you cross among the nice dusty smell of old books, sizzling sounds of old vinyl, old clothes, shoes, toys and furniture with lots of stories behind them – and this famous old salesman standing there for years with his own stories. 

Untapped Cities - City Diaries by Lapin - Mercat dels Encants Barcelona - Jesus

Encants, meaning charm in Catalan, fulfills its name by its unique charm. This flea market carried me away at first sight and has become the source of my biggest inspiration for my style. I find old account books from the 70s in this mystical market to create my sketchbooks. The texture, the few written pages and the feeling of completing something defines my affiliation.

I’m sure this market will take you away and back in time, and during this journey you will witness how the past becomes an inspiration for your everyday life. And it is always a big surprise with what you will return home in your shopping bag (just as I have once bought these night goggles to sketch in the dark).

So, be quick for this journey as they will renovate the market soon and it will probably lose its “encant.”

Untapped Cities - City Diaries by Lapin - Mercat dels Encants Barcelona - gafas

Get in touch with the author @lapinbarcelona and check out his blog. Come back every other Wednesday for the next installation of City Diaries by Lapin.

 City Diaries by Lapin, markets

One Response
  1. Julio Velázquez Reply

    The Word encant applied to this market does not have anything to do with charm but with EN CANT which is the way the Occitan expression “en quant” meaning “in how much” (i.e., what final prize would you give me for this) is pronounced.

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