Romanesque art in Aran valley
The Aran Valley boasts an abundant legacy of monuments and arts, focused above all in the parish churches of the small towns of Aran.
Indeed, numerous Romanesque churches, many of them with their characteristic belfry, which makes them easy to identify, are an important example of its sober ecclesiastic architecture, which in some cases go back more than ten centuries, and which have been embellished with notable gothic and Renaissance characteristics as time has passed.
Unha - Santa Eulŕria
Santa Eulŕria de Unha is a church of Romanesque origin, faithful to the architectural configuration of the period, with its basilical three-nave ground plan, the central one with semicircular vault and the side naves with quarter sphere; to the East, three apses decorated in the Lombardy style; finally a belfry was added in the NW angle in the 18th Century. To begin with, the church of Unha is the only church in the Aran Valley which conserves its Romanesque wall paintings, located in the semi-sphere of the central apse. These paintings have fragments of what the figure of the Pantocrator would have been (the face is conserved) located in the mandorla and surrounded by the Tetramorph.
Tredós - Santa Maria de Cap d'Aran
The architectural configuration of the church of Cap d'Aran follows the principles of Romanesque architecture, namely a three-nave basilical ground plan with a barrel vault headed by three apses; the last restoration work on the church revealed the different building stages involved. In fact, the roof appears to have collapsed at least twice. Another detail which brings this succession of structural collapses to light is the continual reuse of building materials, which is noticeable in certain areas such as the windows, facade and apse. The church of Santa Maria de Cap d'Aran de Tredňs features two unusual characteristics versus the rest of the ecclesiastic heritage of the Aran Valley: the presence of a crypt at the bottom of the altar and the siting of the belfry, removed from the actual religious building.
Salardú - Curch of Sant Andreu
The church of Sant Andrču greets us with an external architectural image that is typical of the late Romanesque, approximately from the 13th Century; it has a basilica-type ground plan with triple-apse heading and tympanum-free facade. The crowning moment of the visit to Sant Andrču de Salardú is when you approach the central apse, where the majestic sculpture sculpture of the Christ of Salardú stands, the masterpiece of the Erill la Vall workshop, which is also believed to have authored the Christ of Mijaran. The piece shows the image of a suffering Christ, with triangular section of the legs and the characteristic features of Romanesque religious iconologies; it dates from the 12th Century.
Betren - Sant Estčue
The first historical references to the church of Sant Estčue de Betren date from the 14th Century, at the dawn of Gothic art, as is shown by the coexistence of Romanesque and Gothic styles in the architectural and sculptural configuration of the church. The absidal space and the facade of Sant Estčue are the two areas which best evince this transition from Romanesque to Gothic. The head of the church is based on three polygonal apses, the central one with five faces and the side ones, with three, where the respective windows are located and semicircular arches alternate with gothic arches; above the central apse there is a patently Gothic window flanked, on the other hand, by two Romanesque loophole windows.