Tiles lost forever
This post is a warning about buildings that are losing their centenary tiles in Porto
Although tiled buildings in Portugal are one of the world’s most valuable heritages, they have only been protected by law since 2017 (n.º 79/2017). Many of these tiles have been destroyed and continue to be so today.
We need your help to expose more cases like these. If you know of any building in Porto that has lost its tiles contact us here.
1. Rua de Miguel Bombarda 10-20, Porto
The building was built before 1824 and initially had no tiles. These were placed at the beginning of the 20th century, being produced in Fábrica Cerâmica do Carvalhinho.
Information about the building on the Portuguese Cultural Heritage website, where it’s indicated as a building “without legal protection”.
2. Rua do Monsenhor Manuel Marinho 24, Porto
Quite unique tiles, probably from the 19th century, painted using templates and with hand-painted details. They were all destroyed and replaced by replicas.
We reported the situation to SOS Azulejo who managed to clarify the reason for the removal of tiles. The remodeling license was given months before the approval of the law that protects tiled facades (n.º 79/2017), so it was legal.
3. Rua Pinto Bessa 498, Porto
This house, “Casa Manuel de Miranda Castro”, despite being abandoned, was a great example of the styles Art Nouveau and the traditional Portuguese combined in architecture.
It was designed by the architect Francisco de Oliveira Ferreira in 1913, who added some beautiful tiles to decorate the building.
The more remarkable, a panel of hand painted tiles with a very characteristic Art Nouveau style saying the year when the house was finished, 1914.
Now all is lost forever to build an apartment building in its place. A big and sad loss for the city and its heritage.
4. Rua de São Brás 62, Porto
Thanks to Francisco Queiroz for finding this case.
5. Rua das Flores 79-83, Porto
This building, the Sousa de Arronches e Silva family house, is in the Historic Center of Porto, classified by UNESCO.
“The entire Historic Centre of Oporto is classified as a National Monument under Law No. 107/2001 of 8 September.”
All the tiles have been removed to paint the facade white.
6. Rua da Firmeza 107, Porto
The tiles were in very good condition. They were probably produced in the Fábrica de Cerâmica e de Fundição das Devesas.
7. Rua de Santo Ildefonso 233, Porto
8. Rua de Dom Jõao IV 46, Porto
All the original tiles were removed and replaced by replicas.
Some of the original tiles were in good condition. They could have been cleaned and preserved and replicas made of the missing or deteriorated ones.
9. Praça Dona Filipa de Lencastre 162, Porto
The tiles were removed replaced with stone.
10. Rua de Diogo Botelho 588, Porto
11. Rua da Conceição 64, Porto
12. Rua do Monte dos Judeus 19, Porto
We reported this situation to SOS Azulejo, who contacted the city of Porto without receiving a response to clarify what happened.
13. Rua Saraiva de Carvalho 1, Porto
The historical center of Porto is classified by UNESCO (under Law No. 107/2001 of 8 September). This building is part of it. All the 19th century tiles that were covering its facade have been totally destroyed and they are on the floor like garbage. We already reported the situation to SOS Azulejo. As they were in the upper floors, we didn’t get the chance to photograph them for our catalogue. We’ll try to digitally create a complete image of the tiles with the pieces that we rescued