Thursday, February 13, 2014

Sagrada Familia

One of the most famous building sites in the world is that of the Sagrada Familia, the Guadi designed church raising up from the centre of Barcelona. Work started in 1892, and Gaudi was involved from the following year, the completion of the building is estimated to be some 15 years or so away. Construction has been stop start over the years, with fund raising being the key issue, however n the 1930s anarchists destroyed the plans and models prepared by Gaudi prior to his death in 1926. During his life, when asked about the length of time the project would take, Gaudi replied "My client is not in a hurry". 

Although still unfinished the church was consecrated in 2010, following the completion of the roof over the main body of the church, and despite the huge scale Sagrada Familia is a church rather than a cathedral.

The building has been open to the public for many years, with visitors entrance fees helping to speed up the construction process. I remember visiting back in 1994 and again with Mark in 2004, and the changes over that period are noticeable. Unfortunately for us the towers were closed to visitors, apparently due to bad weather, that did seem somewhat hard to understand as it was a clear sunny day. However we will just have to come back on another day! 

The Nativity Facade was the first one completed, and had the most direct influence from Gaudi.
Round the side the scale of construction is obvious
The passion facade, was the work of  Josep Maria Subirachs, and was started in 1954
 Once inside the scale of the building is even more evident. The light floods in from many stained glass windows, whilst great columns tower up to the vaulted ceiling.
 Gaudi was often inspired by nature in his designs, and at the Sagrada Familia this is clearly apparent. The columns supporting the building branch off at seemingly impossible directions, these were planned to resemble the branches of trees, and the dappled effects from the stained glass to imitate the dappled light from a forest canopy.





Although not a garden we felt the organic style of this beautiful building justified another deviation from our usual themes on our blog.
Throughout the building you constantly are looking up, I wonder if that was the intention of Gaudi, to ensure the visitors look heavenwards...


The intricate detail to the vaulted ceiling is exquisite, and feels incredibly organic.

On our city breaks in Europe we have often visited medieval cathedrals, and unlike many similar sized buildings Gaudi's church is so much brighter, yes the stone work is new and clean, but the size and volume of the windows seems to be on a much grander scale. Light was another of the key interests he held, so its little wonder that the Sagrada Familia is so bright. 

Gaz 

32 comments:

  1. What amazing light and detail. I imagine that both believers and non - believers would leave the building feeling uplifted and inspired.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, we agree with you Anna! The architect's a genius!

      Delete
  2. Surely this is one of the most intricate building ever created. Your eyes and brain don't even know where to begin, there is so much visual information to absorb. Utterly fascinating.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Outside it looks amazing already with all the intricate details but the moment you go inside...truly spectacular! The roof and some of the ceiling weren't finished yet ten years ago and the mass were still held in the crypt. It was great to see that now the service is held where it's supposed to be :)

      Delete
  3. Beautiful! thanks for the tour!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lisa! See you at the fling too!

      Delete
  4. I have watched many documentaries about this church. But, they just talked about the architect, architecture, taking too long time, etc, etc; but they never showed the inside. What a BEAUTY. Huh! I didn't know there are differences between church and cathedral. What are those? You guys have also done a great job in taking the pictures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The inside is simply amazing, and bathed in colour and light! Just from vague memory and not googling yet there are hierarchy amongst types of catholic churches, cathedral being higher and also depends on who presides there and rank of priest who holds mass in it.

      Delete
  5. Have you changed the design of your blog? It looks different.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A little bit, odd tweak here and there :)

      Delete
  6. It really is spectacular, maybe he is the only one in the world with that architectural style. This church must always be in the itinerary of everybody going to Barcelona.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He has contemporaries from the same era and movement Andrea but his style is unique to him :)

      Delete
  7. That ceiling is breathtaking! Gaudi's designs are unlike any other.

    ReplyDelete
  8. WOW. That is unlike anything I've ever seen!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I don't recall ever seeing photos that captured the indoor light the way yours have. Bravo!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We got the timing right too, so sunny outside then which filtered through indoors nicely Loree :)

      Delete
  10. What a fabulous piece of architecture, I love the way the stained glass windows refract the light and create rainbows,, and the sweeping organic forms of the pillars and vaulting. The front facade looks almost as if it belongs under the sea somehow.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gaudi was inspired by nature and you can certainly see so many elements of this inspiration through his work especially. The lighting, tree canopy feel, and even walking underneath a canopy of palm leaves in one section is amazing. The older Gaudi part certainly looks like the caverns of an old cave or an old coral leaf, truly unique!

      Delete
  11. Amazing place to visit. You got some great photos.The time involved for this was worth the end results with all the lovely details.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have admired Gaudi's work in books for years. Thank you for these great images from inside the church. Someday it would be wonderful to see it in person!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hopefully you'll be able to see it in person very soon Peter!

      Delete
  13. Sadly Gaudi ended his life in poverty and had to sleep on the pavement outside the church where tragically he died by being run over.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He did became incredibly pious during the latter part of his life and contributed a lot of his personal fortune to finishing the church. I do wonder, had if not he was mistaken for a beggar and received no delay in getting treatment how much longer he would have lived and what bearing it would have had to the finishing of the church...

      Delete
  14. I thought I had read wrong when I saw the date the cathedral was started, then realized this structure must take the prize for one taking the longest to compete. But WOW! Now I see why. It truly is an amazing architectural feat. The light coming through the windows would give Gaudi great joy, to see his vision come to life. It is sad he never saw it completed, but we in the modern era are fortunate that the work continued. Thanks for sharing! If I am ever in Barcelona, I will be sure to visit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A pleasure Debs! The timescale for building the cathedral is rather medieval despite being relatively modern, mainly because they rely solely on donations. Most of the original plans were destroyed during their civil war unfortunately but they're trying to build as true to Gaudis vision as possible with the little artifacts and models that are still left.

      Delete
  15. What a beautiful place. Those stained glass windows are stunning and I love your photos! Thanks for the tour!

    ReplyDelete
  16. I've not been over here for awhile so had so many blog posts to choose to read - I had to read this one first as this place has always amazed me. This is the first time I've ever seen the interior and it's as spectacular inside too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The spectacle inside is simply amazing, unique from the outside yet complemental :)

      Delete

Thank you for taking the time to reply to our post, we love reading comments and hearing your views.

Due to the increased level of spam, please note comments on older posts are moderated and only published after approval. All new comments are read and any spam is deleted.

 
Related Posts with Thumbnails