What happens when a Valencian is given a piece of art? Fire!!

Did you know there is an area in Spain that every year sets on fire dozens of pieces of art?

Watch this video and see it for yourself!

Don’t worry! These pieces of art (so-called “fallas“) are made on purpose to be devoured by the flames.

The tradition dates back to the pagan traditions that connected fires with the celebration of the equinox (the moment of the year when the night and day hours are the same and that marks the beginning of the Spring). Later on this celebration got mixed with the burning of the winter lamps by the carpenters of the city around that time of the year. At some point someone thought funny to build up a human like statue with those planks of wood, adding some rugs and putting some elements to make it look like someone in town.

In the last century the materials used have evolved to lighter cardboard and cork based ones, very detailed and painted on. It takes almost a whole year to make some of the statues and they reach up to 30 metres high (that is a 9 floors building!).

Once finished they are “planted” in squares all over the city by the crafters and associations that built them and are on display for 5 days. Then they are set on fire on March 19th, day of Saint Joseph.

These parties are a mixture of fireworks, devotion, satiric art, explosions and fire.

See what happens when people is asked to sing about Fallas:

Do you want to know more?

http://www.amusingplanet.com/2012/03/las-fallas-festival-of-fire-celebrated.html

http://www.enforex.com/culture/fallas.html

http://www.visitvalencia.com/en/whats-on-offer-valencia/festivities/the-fallas

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