Tuesday, June 25, 2013

June 25 - Antoni Gaudí

Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí was born on June 25, 1852, in Catalonia. He studied architecture in Barcelona and gained recognition working in a variety of styles until he became a leading proponent of Catalan Modernisme, a cultural movement focused on the search for Catalan national identity. His work impressed an industrialist who commissioned several of his major works, including the Palau Güell (palace) and Park Güell. In 1883 Gaudí took over construction of Barcelona’s Sagrada Família (Basilica and Expiatory Church of the Holy Family), the design of which he entirely altered to reflect an organic style, imitating natural shapes. Its design is a mix of Spanish Late Gothic, Catalan Modernisme and Art Nouveau, transformed by Gaudi’s own distinctive aesthetic. The nave’s interior (pictured) is designed as a forest of inclined columns, branching like trees, which enhances structural soundness. Seven of Gaudí’s works, including the Sagrada Família (still in progress), have been declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

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