Temple de la Sagrada Familia: Old and New Spires of Gaudi

Temple de la Sagrada Familia
Antonio Gaudi is without doubt the world's greatest surreal architect. Before he began construction on the Sagrada Familia in 1882, Gaudi had already completed many other works, but it's also true that he spend some 40 years constructing this cathedral, and the last 15 years were devotedly solely to it. Yet, Sagrada Familia, formally known as Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família, was always his passion and the birth of surrealism in architectural form.

He modified his designs many times, but most of them are available for visitors in the museum below the Passion side of the structure. To visualize structural symmetry as well as integrity, Gaudi hung fabric with weights in ways that resembled the spires upside down. Thus, he was able to find both beauty and strength of construction that would last a very long time.

In these images, note the slender height of the towers, which deceive the eye by appearing very airy and without the massiveness so often found Gothic style churches of the time. In this respect, the newer towers built after his untimely death try to replicate this with a honeycomb look.

Gaudi's early style appears to me a blend of Gothic and Modern, particularly in the Apse, the first section constructed. Born in that that architectural epoch, as seen in the introductory foundation entrance post of 1882, Gaudi later a clearly evolved beyond the static Gothic that had ruled European church building for nearly a thousand years.

As Gaudi increasingly wanted delicate spires that appeared not massive and imposing but reaching skyward without the terrestrial bound bound nature of stone built Gothic style. He envisioned towers that reached toward the heavens with liberty, rising toward an unearthly realm.

To do this, Gaudi also clearly employed steel and portland cement, a relatively new building innovation at the time. His plans call for a total of 18 spires, one representing each, in ascending order of height, the 12 Apostles, the 4 Evangelists, the Virgin Mary, and highest of all, Jesus Christ.




Post a Comment