Fundació "la Caixa", the community projects area of the savings bank Caixa d'Estalvis i Pensions de Barcelona, has a major Modernista heritage with which it develops some of its functions.
First, a brief outline of its large CaixaForum complex, which houses all the activities that the Fundació "la Caixa" promotes in the fields of culture and thought. It is located in the former Casaramona factory, designed by Josep Puig i Cadafalch and built between 1909 and 1911 for a textile industry that specialised in the manufacture of cotton fabrics. The resulting look of the industrial building is surprising, a well composed series of compact block volumes of one, two and three floors over of which a clock tower and water tower are highlights. The entire building is made of exposed brick, which contrasts with the colourful mosaics of its signs and forceful ironwork.
After the Spanish Civil War, it was converted into a barracks for Spain's national police force and naval police and suffered progressive degradation, even though it was declared a monument of national historic interest in 1976. Rehabilitation of the building by Francisco Javier Asarta, Roberto Luna and Robert Brufau has consolidated the existing building, which has retained all its original volumes. Access to the series of buildings is through a powerfully designed extension area by the architect Arata Isozaqui that leads visitors to the basement area.
The Fundació "la Caixa" also was responsible for conserving and restoring the Casa Macaya, on Passeig de Sant Joan, a building that was also designed by Puig i Cadafalch and built between 1899 and 1901. It was originally a residential building with a sgraffito covered façade and flanked by two towers encircling a row of adjoining windows. Inside, the entrance staircase leading to the main floor is covered by spectacular Catalan vaults and this is another highlight, a traditional technique that Modernista architects knew well.
Fundació "la Caixa" in Barcelona has rehabilitated the former Santa Llúcia institution for the blind, designed by Josep Domènech i Estapà and built between 1904 and 1909. It was an important social welfare building made of brick with brightly coloured ceramic ornamentation. It was restored by Enric Sòria and Jordi Garcés in 1979 and integrated into the CosmoCaixa project for the promotion of science.
The Fundació "la Caixa" also manages a very representative building on the Balearic Islands, the former Gran Hotel, designed by Domènech i Montaner and built between 1901 and 1903. It comprises a series of buildings from his best architectural period and has some splendid interiors, with decorative paintings by Joaquim Mir and Hermen Anglada Camarasa. The building was converted into ministerial buildings in the 1940s and the layout and ornamentation of its interiors disappeared. It was restored in 1993 and received Spain's national award for the restoration and conservation of cultural heritage.