In spring 1910 Antoni Gaudí went to Vic for a period of repose, accompanied by the Jesuit father Ignasi Casanovas. His stay in the capital of Osona coincided with preparations for the celebration of the centenary of the birth of Vic philosopher Jaume Balmes, and the organisers asked the architect for ideas for the event. Gaudí proposed the restoration of Balmes’ birthplace and placing a fountain and two monumental street lights in the Mercadal, Vic’s main square. Only the street lights were made to the architect’s design and directed by his disciple Josep Canaleta. They were inaugurated on 7 September 1910 and remained in the square until August 1924, when they were taken down.
The street lights in the square were monumental structures, built from basalt blocks joined together by iron bands and crowned with four-armed iron crosses. The lamps were supported by iron arms shaped like branches and one of the two also sustained metal sheets bearing the dates of the birth and death of Jaume Balmes.