If there would be only one thing I could do in Barcelona, it would be a visit to Gaudi's Sagrada Familia, in fact it would be worth a trip alone. The Sagrada Familia is a most beautiful, astonishing and breathtaking monument to nature, and a most joyous and awe inspiring place to be.
Gaudi's plans and visions for the construction, function and decoration of the church were entirely based on the organic forms and shapes of nature, while inventing ground breaking structural designs based on his studies of plants.
The immensely tall supporting columns follow the natural weight distribution of trees, branching out when rising to/reaching the ceiling. Whether indoors or outdoors, there are no flat surfaces or straight lines.. instead, the structural and ornamental shapes resemble those of plants, animals, minerals or planetary systems. Stair cases look like giant snail shells, while local flowers and native wildlife are part of the decorations and detail. Light is captured and reflected through a double roof, and streams through numerous large windows, recreating the effect of sunlight pouring through the branches of a forrest.
The basilica's inner forrest, with 'tree' columns stretching towards a starry sky
Amidst the bronze ivy leaves you find sculpted bumble bees, earthworms, lady bugs and lizards. A little opening in the door allows a lizard to see the inside of the church. How can one not adore a building which gives such consideration to a small creature!
The construction started in 1893, and it is still work in progress. The building of the Glory façade only just began, and the tallest towers (which will almost double the church's height) are yet to be added. The estimated completion date is 2026.
Clockwise from left: A glowing canopy with a latin cross (Gaudi's only concession to traditional church design) and decorated with vines is suspended above the raised altar. Holy water basin, made from a giant oyster shell. Ceiling detail
Capsule pieces: Sky blue linen shirt (here available online) with off-white pants.
Accessories: Hermès 'Mytiques Phoenix' cotton Pareo, Karla bracelet in caramel and Kelly 35 in etoupe. Pendant necklace in or (back in stock soon).
Shoes: off-white Superga canvas sneakers
Incredible progress has been made since the last time we visited, in 2009
Sagrada Familia: Carrer de Mallorca, 401, 08013 Barcelona. To avoid queues, you can pre-book your tickets online: here
Part IV of the Barcelona travelogue (final part) to come soon.
You might also like:
You might also like: