"It would be a betrayal to even think of finishing the Sagrada Familia . . . without genius. Let it remain there, like a huge rotting tooth." -- Salvador Dali, Catalan artist
|Sagrada Familia from Sant Pau, another World Heritage Site|
We leave Barcelona in the morning but, before we go, a word about the Sagrada Familia. the church which has been under construction here for the last 133 years.
|Sagrada Familia from Montjuïc|
Antoni Gaudi is the mad genius behind it all. He was the Architect Director of the Sagrada Familia for 42 years. It was his magnum opus. After photographing the basilica from different points as we explored the rest of the city, we finally did go inside.
|Sagrada Familia from el Guinardó mirador|
I love what he did .... especially the bugs nestled in the wild, over-grown vines surrounding the entrance under his Nativity facade. Yes, for all of it, I like the bugs best, that he included them.
|Swami at Gaudi's Nativity facade|
|A ladybug at Gaudi's entrance|
|Some ants at Gaudi's entrance|
|A fly at Gaudi's entrance|
And the light inside is excellent. I have read that he intended the interior columns to resemble a forest. hey do but, for me, the magic ends there. Sadly, this is no Gaudi forest.
And yes, as a whole, the site is impressive and unique but, in my opinion, very little of it is true to Gaudi's vision. Only the Nativity facade, crypt and apse are purely his. After completing them he died.
|Interior - Sagrada Familia|
Darth Vader presiding over all from the back
The rest, the 80% done since his death in 1926, is spartan, angular and as indifferent to nature as Gaudi was intimate with it.
|Darth Vader? Is that you?|
After visiting the Sagrada Familia and reading about his "accident", I came away with the sense that, after being consumed by this project for nearly fifty years, he willing stepped in front of that train.
Our host agreed adding, "everyone here in Barcelona thinks so".