21 November 2011

Barcelona day 3 - Casa Batllo and La Sagrada Familia

Hearing: Rihanna - Cheers (Drink to that)

I should warn you that this is a photo and Antoni Gaudi heavy post. If it isnt your sort of thing, come back soon for my remaining posts on London and Prague.

Casa Batllo and La Sagrada Familia were the final two stops of my Barcelona touring. How else would you cap off such a trip except by seeing what Antoni Gaudi is most famous for?

I did want to see another house designed by Gaudi, the La Pedrera. Its inside was described to me by i girl i met in line for the La Sagrada Familia as Alice in Wonderland on crack...however, the line outside was too long and i had to give it a miss.

The balconies are designed to look like waves crashing on rocks.

Casa Batllo is such an amazing house. From the entrance hall to the roof top my eyes were hungrily taking in every detail of the breath-taking house. It really is such amazing architechture and design - you would be hard pressed to find a straight surface anywhere. The use of light, curved shapes and coloured glass added to the sense of whimsy gleaned from the facade of the house.

Here are some photos from the outside. It is said that, like a great work of art, many people see different things in the facáde of the building...some see bone, others see masks...what do you see?

The below are photos from inside the house, these are the various main living spaces and other parts that caught my eye. The glass above the doorways appear one colour on one side and another if you see them from the other side.

A beautiful ceiling - inspired by the sea

The roof and upper or "attic" floor were different from the rest of the house. The attic was simple white and made use of a lot of natural light. Not a single artificial light was on in the photo taken of the hallway. The roof was a colourful mosaic in a similar style to the facáde of the house...look at those chimneys!

Casa Batlo rooftop - and a lot of people on audio guides!

Antoni Gaudi did not simply design large structures...outside Casa Batllo, the paving tiles and lamp posts were designed by him too.

I cannot overstate how awe-inspiring La Sagrada Familia is. The night before my visit, Dan's sister was saying to me during our tapas dinner that she was stunned when she walked in and that she must have used up 6 rolls of film (she prefers film photography). I thought she was exaggerating. When i walked in, i was gobsmacked. I cannot put it any other way. I stood there and the only thing that came out was "holy crap" over and over for about a minute. I realise that some religious people might be offended, and honestly, i know it was inappropriate, but it wasnt intentional, it was as if i had no control over what i was saying, i was that affected.

The structure is not complete. A lot has been done since Gaudis death but you can actually see the differences even though it is being built using his designs. I spent a long time there. I did take photos but they hardly capture its brilliance so i strongly recommend you check out their website, those photos do it more justice. At one point i simply stopped and sat somewhere to try and take it all in.
My favourite part is looking up at the ceiling. The columns inside the Cathedral are designed like tree trunks and the ceiling to look like the underside of a canopy of trees. Unlike most churches and cathedrals i've seen in Europe, this one does not have the large amounts of stain glass depicting scenes from scripture and is full of bright light. I could go on but it is something that you really must see and experiance for yourself. In the meantime, here are some modest photos taken by myself.

Photo Op!! :)

Before flying back to the UK, i did sqeeze in some shopping while in Barcelona. I picked up some presents for friends and family and a few beautiful pieces of jewellery for myself - nothing fancy but just beautiful and unique. I'll have to post about that another time though, this post has been long enough! If your still with me till now - well done!


1 comment:

  1. Very favorite place in Barcelona. I saw one time. Travel notes shared here (gezi).