Friday, October 05, 2007

La Sagrada Familia

Without even being finished, La Sagrada Familia (Holy Family in Catalan) is the signature building of Barcelona. I won't waste too much time describing its history, since Wikipedia does a better job, other than to say that its creator, the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi, has works throughout Barcelona.

Are those bowls of fruit atop the spires? Yes they are. George Orwell wrote that the Anarchists showed bad taste during the Spanish Civil War by not blowing up La Sagrada Familia when they held Barcelona. But given that the work was barely a decade old at that point, perhaps Orwell couldn't appreciate what the building would become.

(Pretension alert) I only like to shoot with natural light.

Is that sky beyond? Yes it is. Did we say it was unfinished? Uh-huh. This is an inside shot, but as you can see, the covering from the elements is not quite finished. I also like this shot because it shows how Gaudi topped his columns in the basilica with four fingers to support the weight. Gaudi preferred biomorphic shapes, rather than the rigid lines of classical architecture, and the columns reflect his tastes.

Ironically, the building is undergoing a renovation at the same time as it's still being completed. But that's probably standard operating practice in cathedral building, where centuries can pass between laying of cornerstones and final completion. Or as Gaudi put it, "My client is not in a hurry."

The main front, where all visitors enter, depicts the passion of Christ. This side entrance pictured immediately above depicts the Nativity, with fanciful images of Christ in the manger, angels, magi and shepherds.

Five million people a year visit this unfinished cathedral.

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Blogger Middle Kid said...

I must say that I agree with George.

4:15 PM  
Blogger oldest kid said...

I would love to see it, although I really think the fruit is an odd touch.

2:12 PM  

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