22 Jun 2010

Hoguera Oficial, SJ-2

I spent 4 solid hours walking around this afternoon visiting all (I think) the Hogueras in the core downtown area, and I'm pooped! I still haven't decided how I'm going to organise the "viewing" and I'm too tired to sort through and edit over 200 photos tonight, so for today I'm just going to show you the "official" Hoguera, which is to say the one in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento. It doesn't enter into any of the competitions, and it's the one that starts off the Noche de San Juan by being burnt precisely at midnight (all the others start a bit later) upon the order of the Bellea del Foc.

Hoguera Oficial, "back" view

The theme of this year's Hoguera by artist Pedro Espadero (at a cost of 102'000€) is "Amor de Verano" or "Summer Love". Apparently it's 80% wood, and the base covers 18 metres while the whole monument weighs more than 7'000kg!

Hoguera Oficial, "frontal" view

Let's move in for a closer look, shall we?

I've noticed these past 3 years that a marine scene seems almost obligatory in an Hoguera in Alicante! Perhaps to remind people how much we owe the sea? Particularly in this province of fishermen and beach tourism...

This one's fun! It's what I'll be doing Thursday night while everything gets burnt: insulting firemen while hoping to be hosed down (and so cooled off)!

La Banyà!

The accompanying text states:
"El agua de la banyà
tiene algo de misterio,
cambia insultos por piropos
al cuerpo de los bomberos."
Which roughly translates as:
"The water of the banyà
is a bit mysterious,
it changes insults into flattery
for the corps of firemen."
The Banyà is a wonderful tradition of the Hogueras. It takes place while the monuments burn... we (the crowd) insult the firemen and in exchange they get us all soaking wet! It definitely helps to fight the heat from the flames. ;o)

Here are several loving couples...

And here's a scene some people love, while others don't: the mascletà!

La Mascletà!

I think this is my favourite shot so far this year...

We mustn't forget the kiddies!

Hoguera Oficial Infantil

I'm not sure what the Indian Chief is doing there... the other figures all seem to represent elements of European history or literature... The woman on the bull is Europa, from Greek mythology.

Hoguera Oficial Infantil

Here's the ninot they had in the official exhibit, Napoleon on his way to St Helena:

And I loved seeing this pair:

although I must say I much prefer the Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law versions! ;o)


  1. These are some very incredible pictures, Cris, and I agree that the one with the chains and thunderbolt are amazing. I am enjoying your pictures very much! I can see why you are pooped.

  2. I love the one - Napoleon on his way to St Helena.

    Keep up the good work...

  3. NO sleep till the festival is over! I know how much fun you have partying, eating and dancing!

    I like what you wrote about reminding people what we owe the sea, especially after the oil spill. Cris, it gets worse everyday. The globs of tar started washing ashore in Pensacola, Florida on Wednesday morning in masses. They can't keep up with the clean up any more and it is breaking my heart. Loui (Mountain Mermaid) was there recently and posted photos of the white sand beaches. Just weeks later and that is gone for how long now? I just think of all the sea creatures and cry all over again.

    We need to not only celebrate our oceans, we need to protect them, as you well know.


Hey there! Yes you! The quiet one in the back... I'd love it if you hung out for a bit and shared your thoughts!

I might stop by your place with an answer, but I'm more likely to reply right here so click on "email follow up comments" if you'd like to see what I and others have to say and come continue the conversation! ;o)