(Pronounced an TONIO gow DEE on the La Pedrera museum Audio Guide)
Casa Mila/La Pedrera
son of a coppersmith, Antoni Gaudi was born in Reus, Spain in 1852. He
studied at the Escola Superior d'Arquitectura in Barcelona and designed
his first major commission for the Casa Vincens in Barcelona using a Gothic Revival style that set a precedent for his future work.
Over the course of his career, Gaudi developed a sensuous, curving, almost surreal design style which established him as the innovative leader of the Spanish Art Nouveau movement. With little regard for formal order, he juxtaposed unrelated systems and altered established visual order. Gaudi's characteristically warped form of Gothic architecture drew admiration from other avant-garde artists.
Although categorized with the Art Nouveau, Gaudi created an entirely original style. He died in Barcelona in 1926.
- Great Buildings (1/2011)
was an ardent Catholic, to the point that in his later years, he
abandoned secular work and devoted his life to Catholicism and his Sagrada Família...
He died three days later on June 10, 1926, half of Barcelona mourning his death. He was buried in the midst of La Sagrada Família. Because he did not use blue prints for his unfinished masterpiece but worked from his imagination, his fellow workers could not complete it. It is for this that Gaudí is known to many as "God's Architect". La Sagrada Família is now being completed but differences between his work and the new additions can be seen.
As of 2007, completion of the Sagrada Familía is planned for 2026.
- Great Masters of Art (1/2011)
throughout his life, studied nature's angles and curves and
incorporated them into his designs and mosaics. Instead of relying on
geometric shapes, he mimicked the way men stand upright. The
hyperboloids and paraboloids he borrowed from nature were easily
reinforced by steel rods and allowed his designs to resemble elements
from the environment...
Because of his rheumatism, the artist observed a strict vegetarian diet, used homeopathic drug therapy, underwent water therapy, and hiked regularly. Long walks, besides suppressing his rheumatism, further allowed him to experience nature.
The same expressive power of Gaudí's monumental works exists in his oddly graceful chairs and tables. Gaudí's architecture is a total integration of materials, processes and poetics. His approach to furniture design exceeded structural expression and continued with the overall architectural idea.
Gaudí's originality was at first ridiculed by his peers. Indeed, he was first only supported by the rich industrialist Eusebi Güell. His fellow citizens referred to the Casa Milà as La Pedrera ("the quarry"), and George Orwell, who stayed in Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War, admittedly loathed his work. As time passed, though, his work became more famous. He stands as one of history's most original architects.
- Wikipedia (1/2011)