Perhaps Gaudí is not so Gaudy

The English word gaudy is basically defined as ostentatious, tastelessly decorated, or overly ornamented. Its origin may be from Old English, but some say it derives from the name of the Spanish Catalan architect Antonio Gaudí, whose designs are interpreted by some as, well… rather gaudy.

Gaudí (1852 – 1926) lived and worked in Barcelona. His unique style is imprinted on numerous sites in the city. He possessed a love for nature, which produced a very organic look in his designs. He avoided straight lines, favoring fluid, flowing shapes.

We regularly passed two of his buildings on our way to/from Metro stations. Here is the Casa Milá.

A Goudi building in downtown Barcelona

The Casa Milá in Barcelona, designed by Gaudí in the early 20th century.

Another location is the Casa Batlló, a building restored by Gaudí from 1905 – 1907. It was originally a residence but is now a museum. We were not able to go inside, but I saw photos of the interior, and it is equally distinctive. I could not take a face-on photo due to construction front of the building. This is the best full-view I could get on this trip.

The Casa Batlló en Barcelona.

The Casa Batlló en Barcelona.

Notice the skeletal appearance of the lower facade.

The lower facade of the Casa Batlló. The inside is even more interesting.

The lower facade of the Casa Batlló. The inside is even more interesting.

The facade is intended to appear organic. Some deem it to simply look strange. (I am a former member of this group.) I am now beginning to appreciate Gaudí’s style. It is certainly interesting to study, especially when one understands a little of what influenced the design.

The upper levels of the Casa Batlló.

The upper levels of the Casa Batlló.

I will post later on Gaudí’s masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia cathedral. It has been under construction since 1882 (as in the 19th century), and should finally be completed in the next couple of decades.

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About LukeChandler

Luke holds an M.A. in Ancient and Classical History and has been an adjunct professor at Florida College in Temple Terrace, Florida. Luke and his wife Melanie have five children. He serves as a minister in English and Spanish with the North Terrace Church of Christ and participates annually in archaeological excavations in Israel. Luke also leads tours to Europe and the Bible Lands.
This entry was posted in Interesting places to visit, Overseas trips, Spain and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Perhaps Gaudí is not so Gaudy

  1. Jared Saltz says:

    I’m going to have to say that I’m still a member of the former group….

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