Thursday, May 3, 2012

Antoni Gaudi: Part Two

As a follow-up to my previous post, I would like to showcase some of my favorite of Gaudi’s works. First and foremost, and probably the most famous, is the Sagrada Familia.

The Sagrada Familia is a giant church in Barcelona that has been under construction since 1882. In fact, the workers aren't entirely sure when it will be finished! It has faced a lot of criticism since it has been modified by present architects. Gaudi was known for improvising and changing his mind constantly, hardly ever following a design plan. This makes it very hard for architects to continue his vision, but they are attempting to do it justice.

 In this picture of the inside of the Sagrada Familia, you can see one of Gaudi’s most notable influences: nature. These columns were meant to look like trees, their branches stretching up into the canopy that created the ceiling.  It is extremely intricate and the church is considered one of his master works.

Another one of my favorites is Park Guell. It was originally part of a commercial housing project, commissioned by Eusebi Guell, with the park modeled off of a English style garden. The symbol of the park, the lizard guarding the staircase, has become one of Gaudi's most recognized mosaics.

The park was meant to be a tranquil retreat for the people of Barcelona similar to the El Retiro Park in Madrid. Except, instead of being placed on flat land, it was created on a hill which required an intricate road system, stairs, archways, and terraces.  It was meant to be both peaceful and social. It features a detailed mosaic bench meant to resemble a giant serpent.The curves were designed to encourage talk and chatter between those seated on it. 
These work are prime examples of Gaudi's use of color, structure, and mosaics. He always pushed the envelope to create unique works of art that could be used as public and private spaces. I can't wait to see some of his work in person. The pictures are just small glimpses of a giant space, so I am extremely excited that I could have a chance to take it all in at once. 


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