Traveling to Barcelona is like traveling to an outdoor art gallery. The whole city is scattered with the architecture from designer Antoni Gaudí. As a testament to him and his work, this week, we will explore Barcelona.
One of Gaudí’s amazingly unique designs is Casa Vicens, which was Gaudí's first major architecture commissioned project. Designed with various materials, the bricks, tiles, and iron came together to create a truly unique style and started the Catalan Modernism movement. Since it was first built in 1888, this once summer home has undergone renovations and transformations into a museum.
Casa Batlló, known as the house of bones to locals, was built to look more like the back of a dragon than a home. The Batlló family commissioned Gaudí to redesign the house into a priceless creation. He created the façade to look like different levels of anatomy. The base tier is a combination of abstract bones, followed by a tier of blood vessels and muscles, and the top tier is a layer of scales and the spiked back of a dragon. This house is now open as a museum to tour the soft innards of this giant creature.
Perched high atop a hill in Barcelona, Park Guell is one of Gaudí's most natural designs. When entering the park, you'll be greeted by a giant salamander known as "el drac." Winding your way through the stone columns of the arboretum, you'll find small pieces of mosaics, manicured gardens through what was once designed to be a self-contained community for 60 families. It was transformed into a city park that opened in 1924.
His last and most famous to date is the Sagrada Familia. Gaudí took on designing this basilica that was estimated to take over a century to finish. The three facades of the magnificent church depict the Passion, Nativity, and Glory. The interior comprises 18 spires, numerous towers, chapels, portals, and other features. The tallest of the spires, once complete, will make the Sagrada Familia the tallest church in the world. Forty-four years after the foundation was laid, Gaudí was tragically hit by a tram, with only 20% of the construction complete on his masterpiece. The building is said to be finished in 2026 for the anniversary of his death. However, other estimates extend into 2040 for completion.
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