Sometimes when you visit a museum you are overwhelmed by the beauty of the art. That was certainly the case at The Picasso Museum in Barcelona. While admiring the pottery of Picasso i was also struck with the beauty of this young woman. She struck me as a vision of Catalonian Feminism.
The Ancient Synagogue of Barcelona was built in the sixth century and is the oldest saving synagogue in Spain and one of five medieval synagogues in the world. It was built underground because because no house of worship was allowed to be taller than the smallest Catholic church. Of course then came The Spanish Inquisition 1391 and the Jewish quarter was sacked and over 300 were killed. Jews were forced to turnover all their possessions to the King and permitted to leave the country. The alternative was death of conversion to Catholicism. The Nazi’s didn’t invent this stuff they were just more efficient at it.
Today the synagogue is a museum. Barcelona has two working synagogues and a pollution of around 15,000 jewish people with about 45,000 in Spain. Of course like jewish people all over the world they face anti semitism but in Spain like the United States they are now free to practice their faith.
La Sagradia Famila is regarded as Gaudi’s Masterpiece. Yet he did not start the project and it still remains unfinished, In 19 March 1882, construction of the Sagrada Família began under architect Francisco de Paula del Villar. In 1883, when Villar resigned,Gaudí took over as chief architect, transforming the project with his architectural style. The church combines Gothic and Art Nouveau styles.
The Catholic Church does not support or fund this Cathedral and many consider it to be almost obscene. Unfortunately we did not get reservations and could not gain access to the structure. Still the exterior itself is magnificent and these photos give some idea of the detail that is persistent within the structure. It is massive and impossible to photograph in its entirety. The Church will have three grand façades: the Nativity façade to the East, the Passion façade to the West, and the Glory façade to the South which is still under construction.
Casa Milà is one of Gaudi’s last works. The courtyard of this residence is in itself a work of art. If you look closely you can see the roof sculptures in one of the windows. The green and blue colors are for the sea which was the inspiration for this construction.
Barcelona is a vibrant and culturally diverse city. Nobody expresses the soul of the city better than Antoni Gaudí. He was a Spanish architect known as the greatest exponent of Catalan Modernism. Gaudí’s works have a highly individualized, one-of-a-kind style. Casa Milà was one of his last works and is commonly know as La Pedrera which means the stone quarry. Its rough hewn appearance is seen throughout the building.
The picture below of the model shows the scope of the building which was designed as a private residence but has a total of eight floors and many separate apartments.
This weeks theme will be patterns. Photographers, including myself, are fascinated with patterns. I think that is because, unlike painters, we deal with physically moving our position and the position of our tools (tripod,lens,etc.)to compose an image. Of course there are patterns in everything, but this weeks images will focus on images that I like primarily because of their repetitive patterns. This one was taken along the Chicago river on the Architectural tour. You can see other images and buy prints of this one at my commercial gallery.