Sagrada Familia Barcelona Unfinished Gaudi Cathedral

This fabulous building is one of the most visited in Barcelona is is a definite must see attraction. Many coach tour stop here, which can be a pain when you are trying to get those pictures. The Sagria Familia is just an awe inspireing constrution. I cant wait to go back and check its progress soon.

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Sagrada Familia

Three words can describe this building: beautiful, insane and unfinished. Looking at it, one cannot help but marvel at the mind that dreamt it up. Such a mind was Antonio Gaudi’s.
Through the bushes we can see the magnifcent spires

As fate would have it when Man dreams up such beauty, it was to be plagued with calamities, delays, illness, lack of funds and finally the death of its creator prior its being finished. Natural shapes were strongly and lovingly represented in Gaudi’s architectural style; and the Sagrada Familia was to be its prime example. Its full name is the Templo Expiatorio de la Sagrada Familia or the Expiatory Temple of the Holy Family. The foundation stone was laid on St Joseph’s day in 1882, but Gaudí would die in 1926. He participated from its very first inception until the day he died.

More of the Sagria Familia but a little closerThe idea of a temple was born in a society of devotees to St. Joseph that was part of a burgeoning Catalan middle class that came out of the Industrial Revolution in the late XIXth Century. Sixteen years later, they were able to buy lot of land between the streets of Marina, Provença, Sardenya and Mallorca and then turned to Francesc del Villar, a renowned architect of the times, who presented the initial design of three naves, seven chapels in the apse and a 85m high spire (or 250 feet). Sadly, disagreements between the first architect, Joan Martorell, and Francesc del Villar led to the former’s departure. Martorell’s assistant was Gaudí and he was asked to finish it. He quickly responded with a new vision of the Temple that would make Villar’s look tame: conceived within a basilical plan focusing on vertical lines, there were five naves in the main nave and three naves in the transept, and a dome of 170m (520 feet) high.

Despite being ill, Gaudí designed the Passion façade in 1910, while the foundations of the Nativity’s had already been laid once the apse was finished in 1894. The temple’s origins in the donations of a society of devotees would be the source of many of its economic problems, which would be exacerbated by the crash of Wall Street in 1929, but Gaudí never gave up and would go out to talk to passers-by in the hope of raising funds. The first bell-tower to see the light of day was that of St. Barnabas (110m or 340 feet high), while the other bell-towers would follow in 1929. The addition of the Faith skylight occurred 4 years later.
Gaudí was accidentally killed in a streetcar accident in 1926 and is buried just outside the Crypt. War, riots and fire would cause near irreparable damage to Gaudi’s crypt and models. He would be succeeded by Francesc Quintana, Domènec Sugrañes i Gras, Isidre Puig Boada, Lluis Bonet i Garí and Francesc de P. Cardoner i Blanch over the following decades, some of whom he had met and worked with over the previous decade or two. Finally, in 1954, the Passion façade is completed. Its sculptures are added 4 years later. The cloister and the window of the northern transept would be only to be completed by the late 1960s. In 1976 were crowned the bell-towers of the Passion facade.
Some interesting measurements and intents of various parts of the temple were that each of the three facades, Nativity, Glory and Passion, had three doors symbolizing Christian virtues and would have four bell-towers of around 100 m high and were dedicated to Jesus Christ: Nativity to his birth and life, Glory to his glory and Passion to his passion and death; of the three, the second remains to be built and is to be the central façade of the temple. Each bell-tower represented an apostle inside of which is a spiral staircase that almost leads to the top. The apse consists of seven polygonal chapels dedicated to the 4 Evangelists, the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ, the last of which is planned to be 170m high. Its columns had a flight of steps to be used as the chorus. The design of the exterior cloister is meant to isolate the temple from the city’s noises, some kind of separation of the sacred from the profane.From the park again after a relaxing sit and rest

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