LiberPress Literature Award 2008

Joan Margarit

Joan Margarit i Consarnau was born in Sanaüja, in the county of La Segarra.


He studied architecture. In 1962, he met Mariona Ribalta who he subsequently married. He has four children: Mónica, Anna, Joana and Carles. From 1968, Margarit was professor of structural calculus at the Technical School of Architecture, Barcelona, although he has now retired.


Margarit first published poetry in Spanish in 1963 and in 1965. Since 1980, he has written in Catalan.

The titles he has published include: L’ombra de l’altra mar (1980); Vell malentès (1981, winner of the Critics’ Prize); Raquel/ La fosca melangia de Robinson Crusoe (1982); Cant d’Hekatònim de Tifundis (1982, Miquel de Palol award and Serra d’Or award); Mar d’hivern (1986, Carles Riba award); Llum de pluja (1986); La dona del navegant (1986, Serra d’Or award 87); Edat roja (1991); Els motius del llop (1993); Aiguaforts (1995); Joana (2002); Estació de França (2004); Càlcul d’estructures (2005), and Casa de misericòrdia (2007).


He has translated Thomas Hardy into Catalan and several Catalan poets into Spanish. His poems have been set to music by Gerard Quintana, Miquel Poveda and Araceli Aiguaviva, and he is the creator of the poetry show “Paraules de jazz”, a poetry and jazz recital that LiberPress inaugurated in the Arab Baths in 2003.


This year, he has been awarded the Rosalía de Castro Award and the National Poetry Prize, the latter awarded by the Spanish Ministry of Culture.

LiberPress Literature Award 2008

Joan received the award because, although it may seem an easy metaphor, as an architect of materials and words, this Catalan poet, who is as sensitive as he is essential, has built his own unique enduring edifice in the Catalan literary landscape, a building made of feelings, souvenirs and memory, of love towards those who are here and those who are no longer here, a house that is a tribute to those who, with him or without him, suffered, fought and used civil resistance (another word that has associations with architecture and building) as a means of affirmation before life, the simplicity of life, freedom and love.