A travel blog of Ireland and Europe

Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

The Sagrada Familia (Basilica of the Holy Family) is a magnificent modern gothic-style church which was high on our list of sights to see during our recent week in Barcelona.

To say we were overwhelmed is an understatement.

Begun in 1882, its chief architect was Antoni Gaudi and he remained in charge until his death in 1926 but it was nowhere near finished at that time and in fact is still being worked on today, with an estimated completion date of 2026! (Puts your kitchen / bathroom makeover delays into perspective, Sarah & Chris.) It is architecture on a grand scale on which whole books have been written but suffice it to say that it is visually complex and you do wonder how any one person could have had the vision to engineer it. There were two particular aspects which caught our attention, but to start with, some general shots of the interior.

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The major attraction for us, though, was Gaudi’s use of light and colour. The large interior was immersed in light and you can see something of that in one of the photos above. At the same time, specific sets of colours were used in different windows and it is these which I have captured in the next set of photos. I don’t think the photo options available within this WordPress blog software will do these photos justice so I am publishing them in a Flickr album and you can see them by clicking on the link below. I recommend using the Slideshow option in Flickr (a “play” button icon towards the top right of the screen).

Sagrada Familia stained glass

The other aspect which intrigued us was the exterior, not so much for its Gothic nature, although that was pretty impressive, but more for the interesting juxtaposition of ancient building style with modern building components – cranes, scaffolding, etc. My first thought was to photoshop them all out but then I thought no, they actually add something to the photos. (You may disagree, of course – they could also be viewed as just cluttered.) Make up your own mind:

Sagrada Familia exterior

 

4 thoughts on “Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

  1. Hewitt Harrison

    This is the most amazing building/construction project of the 2oth/21st centuries in my view. What wonderful pictures. There is a spiritualism emanting from this building even in its unfinished state. The stained glass is fascinating. Mind blowing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and pics……
    Hewitt

    1. admin Post author

      Thanks Hewitt – yes, I agree that there is a spirituality about this place which catches your breath as you take it in. We have now seen many cathedrals throughout Europe and while you can admire their craftmanship and scale, they don’t to me have a particularly spiritual resonance. But this place certainly does.

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