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Antonio Gaudi was born 25th June 1852 and went on to be a known Spanish Catalan architect. Antonio Gaudi was a remarkable architect whose true value only came forward a while after he created the buildings. He has also been known as the Spanish Catalan and the symbol for Catalian Modernism. Just as the people of the city were attempting to make their own mark in science and art, Gaudi's exceptional and unique style came. His work and the buildings he made were criticized by most of the people at first, yet their unique production and architecture added the true beauty of Barcelona. It has also been stated that the works of Gaudi are actually inseparable from Barcelona city. (Sola-Morales 5). The buildings that Gaudi made like Casa Mila, Parque Giell, and Sagrada Familia changed the way architecture was done in Barcelona. The buildings added to the beauty of the city and have become a huge tourist attraction. Many people at time thought that the works of Gaudi do not actually belong in Barcelona because they went against and argued with the current conventions of that time. (Cline, 2011)
Even since Gaudi was a child, he was fond of getting to know more about architecture. Any opportunity he could he looked at varied artistic movements and design that made his mind even more creative. Even when he was taking in information from different artists, Gaudi didn't really care whether they were accepted or rejected at that time. Gaudi's work was made by many influences. As it visible that his work and unique, it is often wondered what exactly shaped his works and the tough behind it. When it comes to movements, his work was generally inspired from the Art Nouveau movement, Gothic movement and Renaissance movement. However, Gaudi who loved and admired nature has been shown to add that into his works as well. Apart from that since Gaudi had a personal attachment to Barcelona and its people, he knew that eventually they would be the one using the buildings. Thus he made sure that the works he made have a correlation to the cultural and social life of the people of Barcelona. (Cline, 2011) Gaudi also made sure that each of his work had a specific correlation with the history and time of that period. For instance, how Gaudi started off the "Sagrada Familia" in 1883 shows the significance of that era by use of cement in the production of the Church. It was during those days that the first Cement factory was opened in Poland. The factory was made by Eusebi Guell who was a friend of Gaudi and it was because of that bond that the material became incorporated in the building. The first parts of the building which were made of concrete.
Gaudi as an artist gave a lot of importance to the specialty of a language after it becomes a poem instead of just plain clauses. Just as there is something close to reality of the normal phrases, the ones that are poetry show a more fantasy and creative side. Gaudi's work had the conventional and constructive productions but also a unique style that showed his way of making buildings. (Raventos-Pons, 2002) Most of Gaudi's work had nature depicted in a lot of the pieces. The work depicted the land characteristic of the Mountains of Montserrat and the olive trees that are usually found there. There is some influence of the jagged Costa Brava and the grottoes. The impact of Nature is quite visible in the Park Guell in Barcelona that was made between 1900 and 1914. The iron gates of the park open up into the beauty garden and beautiful greenery right up front. The walkway just as one enters is shown to depict rock pillars but they actually look like trees growing out of the ground. In little ways as these, Gaudi made sure that nature was a prominent part of his work. The paths and the videacts are merged with nature. This park is one of the works where nature and architecture really blend together and Gaudi here tries to show that the simple things in life can be incorporated into master pieces of art. (Gari, 1998) There a lot of other signs and portraits in the park that show Gaudi was affected by nature and really wanted into be alive. The colors and texture he has utilized in his piece showed the importance of weather as both the color and the design merge together to give a very poetic look. This links us earlier to the fact that Gaudi also made sure that his work was like a form of poetry and thus totally unique. (Raventos-Pons, 2002)
People argue that the work of Gaudi brought forward the smell, touch and even feeling of nature in Barcelona. It turned Barcelona's culture more alive and only unique of the city. As mentioned earlier, the tree like columns were never the less linked to nature. The way the passages are paved show that this sort of work was made after the keeping the curviness of hills in mind. Gaudi also believed that there should always be use of color in all architecture sine all the buildings that were there, were there to put beauty to the place. He stated that nothing that is there in nature is of one color and thus he gave examples of animals, plants and land forms. Learning from that he learned to put contrasts and shades of color in all or most of the buildings he made. (Raves-Pons, 2002) The colors that Gaudi makes use of in his work have some link to the churches that were made keeping the Gothic and Romanesque style in mind. Much more attention is given to the wood panels or sculptures of the aforementioned styles. Seeing how Gaudi had a Mediterranean back ground, he linked linking his works to that as well. Thus parts of the colors that he utilized in his works were often bright and gave a Mediterranean touch as well.
Another building that shows very close relation to nature is the Casa Mila. The way the windows are all curved with the jagged columns and the ironwork that is seen is very close to what is present in nature as well. The way that there are curves present in the Casa Mila shows relation to the curves present in water for instance. Gaudi was a naturalist and thus believed that the works should also show closeness to nature. Apart from having forms resembling natural creations like water or mountains, his works also aren't straight. Most of the buildings or pillars are either curved, leaning or not fully straight thus again depicting nature's impact on his work. (Cline, 2011) The Sagrada Familia was yet another building that was highly depictive of different forms of nature. There were sculptures of birds, reptiles, mammals, polyps, and different fruits and vegetables. (Duffy, 2003)
It was mentioned earlier that part of Gaudi's work seemed to be affected by unreal and fantasy world. Park Guell is yet another example of it as it appears that the opening of the gates open into a magical garden. With he paved pathways and pillars; it could reveal the certain long units of architecture that was prominent in many fairy tales of little children. The pavilions that are made after exiting the stairs are both guarded by a snake and dragon on the stair case. We all know that these two animals are very common in fantasy world and their shimmering presence by Gaudi shows how much he was influenced by Fantasy. The pavilions look somewhat like that ice cream houses that were common in fairy tales like the Brothers Grimm. It is because of its resemblance to such story like structures, Salvador Gali after seeing the park knew that this was a unique but amazing piece of work. (Permanyer, 1997) Thus in short, the paved ways, the iron gates, animals waiting at the staircase make up and represent important fairy tales and thus make it yet another attraction for tourists.
Another influence that has been noted in Gaudi's architecture is it's correlation with Art Nouveau style. The Art Nouveau was also known as Modernism at that time in Catalonia. It has been stated that Art Nouveau and Modernism are two different things. Modernism was actually a movement that came out forward to show the world especially the European neighboring countries that Catalonia had its own traditional and cultural independence. (Mackay, 1989) Gaudi along with artists like Juan Martorell, Puig I Cadafalch and many others became active part of this movement thus made their work that strayed from the traditional way of architecture. Thus, Modernism was yet another influence that was eon in the artist's work. What exactly constituted the Catalonian look or Modernism? The architectures at that time went on to experiment with organic firms, light which consisted both natural and artificial and new building…[continue]
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(Antonio Gaudi) it should also be noted that his works draw inspiration from many disciplines and from the input of artists, engineers and sculptors. The first commission that Gaudi was awarded was for the lampposts for the Plaza Real in Barcelona. (Antonio Gaudi) This was followed by various commissions, which included furniture and alter pieces. An early work was the villa El Capricio at the resort area of Comillas. (Antonio
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