Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Gaudi makes Barcelona beautiful

My sister flew to Spain this week. Yes, I'm a little envious (though I'd rather be there in summer than winter). But to combat my jealousy I started browsing through my photos of a week in Barcelona not all that long ago.

Park Guell in Barcelona (thanks to Gaudi)
I - unfortunately - don't have too much experience of Spain (heaven knows why - there were so many cheap flights there when I lived in Germany - I think I was put off because every second German I knew was going there so it seemed too mainstream!) - but I truly loved Barcelona. What a colourful, bustling city with surprising bursts of history and fantastic food (caramel-filled churros, anyone?!).

My favourite part of Barcelona, hands down, is all the Gaudi architecture. Even the story of Antoni Gaudi tickles my fancy, as he seems such a fascinating man and even his sad death, hit by a tram and then not looked after too well because he looked like a pauper rather than an amazing architect, seems to fit his character well. If he seems larger than life, then his buildings are way, way, way more massive than life. Full of colour and fun and interesting symbolism and a total disregard for the "rules", every Gaudi building I came across in Barcelona impressed me no end. If I had any of the skills required to be an architect, I would want to be exactly like Gaudi.

La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
You can't help but bump into Gaudi when you're in Barcelona, but the two big must-sees are Park Guell (a big park which includes a museum devoted to Gaudi) and La Sagrada Familia, the still-not-quite-finished church which is Gaudi's masterpiece. If your architectural interests lie more with modern straight lines and shiny reflective windows then Gaudi may not be your cup of tea, but I dare you to embrace it all anyway.

7 comments:

  1. I agree, Barcelona is a beautiful city and Gaudi's architecture makes it a wonderland of discovery.

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  2. So true Johanna. Gaudi architecture is kind of like Disneyland for grown-ups!

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  3. We really enjoyed Barcelona too! Gaudi's works are so beautiful and childlike. I loved that La Sagrada Familia looked like one of those sandcastles you make by letting wet sand run through your fingers. Guell Park was so colourful. I also loved the university buildings - it really felt like stepping back in time. really hope to go back to Spain one day

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  4. Wow that is different! I havent seen anything like that before :) Love the "La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona" - very colourful and very differnt.

    Never been to Barcelona before but it sounds so nice.

    Cheers
    Lisa

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  5. @ Rach - I love your description of La Sagrada Familia! So true. And the colour on all Gaudi's stuff is fantastic. I've hardly seen any of Spain so would also like to go and see more.

    @ Lisa - I highly recommend it! I'm a big fan of both Gaudi and Hundertwasser, lots of fun and colourful designs (and not very serious, which I like!).

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  6. Barcelona is really nice and of course Gaudi´s works are just so different from what you see anywhere else, but my favourite city in Spain would be Seville.

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  7. Good to know Sami, I imagine you have seen plenty of Spain whilst living in Portugal so I will keep this in mind! My sister is visiting Barcelona, Madrid and Seville so I'll be interested to hear what she thinks (although she's travelling with a toddler, so her criteria may be different!).

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