Take a guided tour through the most beautiful graphic art on the façades of Lisbon

The tiles are one of icons of the portuguese art. They are a graphic identity of the history of this city and, even today, many creatives and tourists are interested in these pieces of art found in various façades. 

But what gives so much charm to the tiles around the city? The varied colors, the designs, the romantic taste, the historical inspirations? The features are many and each façade looks more beautiful than another, but it’s best to walk around Lisbon to decide what’s your favourite pattern. Before we list you some of the buildings that have to be part of this tourist itinerary, we give you some history.

The tiles are national art, but originated in Persia, having spread throughout the Arab world and the Iberian Peninsula. No doubt Portugal adopted the tiles with and open heart. The use of this art was democratized after the 1755 earthquake, because many Portuguese took advantage of the rubble to decorate their houses, with tiles that were in the palaces. In Lisbon, you can admire 18th and 19th century tile panels. If this is a topic that really interests you, visit these places with some of the most iconic façades:

Campo de Santa Clara
Near the Pantheon and the Feira da Ladra, this façade dates from 1860. Watch the figures of busts and frames in three shades of color: blue, white and yellow. It also tiles that mimic marble in shades of pink. A true work of art.

Loja Viúva Lamego
In Largo do Intendente, you can find the store Viúva Lamego, built between 1849 and 1865. With a romantic style, the façade is covered with tiles with foliage representations, jars and Asian figures, alluding to the trade between Portugal and the East.

Rua da Trindade
The building, between number 28 and 34, was built in 1864. The façade is completely covered with Masonic elements and representative figures of science, agriculture, trade and industries.

Panel "O Mar”
It’s at Infante Santo Avenue, in Lapa, and is one of the most beautiful panels in Lisbon. It was built by Maria Keil in 1958. Titled "O Mar” (The Sea), it represents life in the ocean.

Rua das Janelas Verdes
It’s near the National Museum of Ancient Art. You can easily identify the building, which is covered with raised tiles. It has a more modern style, but should be part of your visit.

Almirante Reis Avenue
At number 74D you will find a building from 1908. On the façade you can see a section lined with green tiles. Then look at the first floor, which is covered with sunflowers and colorful foliage.

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