It is difficult to find words to properly describe the effect of seeing Gaudi’s architecture. Immediately you see it is different to anything else. When we stood outside Casa Batllo, the house he renovated for a local family, we just paused in admiration it is uniqueness and very distinctive style.
His architectural style is greatly influenced by nature and this house really does look and feel like it is alive and has a pulse. There are no straight lines, every wall, door, window, chair, table is curved. The doors to each room are brilliantly crafted, the door handles are uniquely designed to fit your hand, this is also a building that you can’t resist touching and running your hands over. He used curved stones, twisted cast iron and ceramics in organic like forms.
The other immediate impression is that the building is colourful, and inside and out colour is everywhere. The house is covered with coloured tiles arranged in mosaic patterns.
So it is the combination of the unique design, the curved stonework, and colours that create a very memorable visual experience for us.
From here we went to see Casa Mila, an apartment block he designed and constructed. Again it is uniquely Gaudi…we went to the rooftop and wandered around the many chimney stacks on the curved, undulating roof. Inside the apartments the same curved walls, doors, windows and individually designed door handles were everywhere.
Two more Gaudi visits…Park Guell and La Sagrada Familia. At the top of Güell park is a terraced area where we got a great view of the park and of Barcelona City. There is seating around the terrace, curved and swirling of course, covered with multi-coloured tiled mosaics, brilliant and beautiful!
La Sagrada Familia is one of Gaudí’s most famous works in Barcelona, a huge Basilica that has been under construction since 1882 and it’s not expected to be completed till 2026. Yes, that’s right…144 years to construct! Ok so, it’s BIG…it is awesome, it’s a construction site, it’s gobsmackingly brilliant! It was only 15% complete when Gaudi died, he knew he would not be alive to see its completion when he designed it, he never drew complete plans, just made plaster models and gave direction to the workers on how to build it. Unfortunately his original drawings were lost when the basilica was damaged during the Spanish civil war. The construction relies on private donations one of the reasons for its slow progress.