Barcelona Photoblog: güell
Showing posts with label güell. Show all posts
Showing posts with label güell. Show all posts

April 25, 2008

The Bat in Colonia Guell At The Secretary's House

The Bat in Colonia Guell At The Secretary's House

This is a bat, a symbol that was part of Güell family's coat of arms, and on top the omnipresent pigeon, that seems to be some sort of evil partner watching me from his master's shoulder, sorry, wings. She may not harm anyone but she did cover the historic figure with all her glorious s***. The house, belonged to Colonia Guell's secretary (remember Colonia Guell was an industrial estate in Santa Coloma de Cervelló, near Barcelona). It was founded by Eusebi Güell i Bacigalupi in 1890. Güell was a wealthy man and his wife Isabel López Bru, was the daughter of Antoni López i López, first Marques of Comillas who was also a very rich man. Güell ran important textile factories in Barcelona but those were hard times for the sector. To be competitive, especially with the British industry, workers had to produce more for the same money or less. So people started to get organized and to claim for their rights and Güell decided to build a better place out of the city where workers could live around the factory and integrate themselves more in the company. He managed to do so for some time but trade unions and their claims arrived to Colonia Güell in the end.

July 02, 2007

Ceiling Mosaic Inside The Chamber of the 100 Columns, Park Guell, Barcelona Spain

Ceiling Mosaic Inside The Chamber of the 100 Columns, Park Guell, Barcelona Spain
Trencadis ceiling at the 100 Columns Hall in Park Guell

Not the first time Barcelona Photoblog visits Park Guell in Barcelona to show you the impressive work of Gaudi.

We have dealt with mosaic work recently, we mentioned the trencadis technique but we needed some more examples where the degree of improvisation and nature leitmotifs were more evident. Such is the case of this ceiling mosaic inside The Chamber of the 100 Columns including not only tiles but fragments of cups and dishes among other materials to make up something that recalls a flower.

Please follow labels for previous posts.

June 26, 2007

Guell Crypt: Caprice Supreme of Architecture

Guell Crypt Modernist Ceiling by Gaudi

A supreme caprice of architecture: the art nouveau or modernist ceiling at the entrance to the crypt in Colonia Guell by Antoni Gaudi, who had been commissioned by Eusebi Güell the prosperous catalan businessman. Robert Hughes, art critic for Time, recently said he hates Sagrada Familia but loves Colonia Guell, the place where the crypt is. Of course we can object to that if we get carried out by the grandeur of the cathedral. Besides, experts see what we cannot see, no wonder they've been studying for years, although what we understand by art is a concept of man and not a law of nature so no one has the final truth. Anyway, it was about time someone cast a shadow of doubt over stereotypes concerning our city. I suggest you read the book by Robert Hughes: Barcelona. Here is a previous post about the Crypt at Guell Colony.

June 10, 2007

Mosaic Serpentine Benches: A Landmark of Barcelona

Mosaic serpentine benches using trencadis technique in Park Guell by Gaudi
Serpentine bench with Trencadis mosaic technique by Gaudi

This is I believe the third picture where I show serpentine benches by Gaudi located at Park Guell in Barcelona. 

These mosaic or trencadis-made wonders of architecture and design look specially attractive under the last rays of the sun. Although I am used to watching them I always enjoy them as much as this tourist lost in his own thoughts through the viewfinder of his camera.

May 15, 2007

Mosaic Wall Signs at Park Guell. Why Park?

Parc Guell: Serpentine Bench

Although on looking at the thumbnail (some of you come through the City Daily Photo Blog portal or directly searching for Barcelona pictures in Google images) you might think these are a couple of hand wrist Swatch watches nothing could be further from the truth. These are the two mosaics found on the wall at the entrance of Park Guell, which were made following the trencadis technique used by Antoni Gaudi. For English speakers the name is completely normal but it is odd for us that it reads Park and not parc (Cat.) or parque (Sp.). Why "Park"? Basically because the place was initially conceived to be a sort of city on the lap of the mountain based upon the Garden City model by British inventor, Ebenezer Howard, who impressed by a futuristic novel published in 1888 and some other preceding works created his own Utopian plan about a garden city, a new home for an idyllic society that would make a better world. Remember that Gaudi and his art patron Eusebi Güell i Bacigalupi were very influenced by the modern ideas of those times, coming from Europe and the United States, and besides, they were very religious men. About the image, I should say they were taken on a dull weather day and are not especially my favorite, in fact, I think the idea of mixing both words in one is not new but they surely have helped me make my point about the origin of the name.

May 03, 2007

Colonia Guell: Windows - A Futurist Vista

Colonia Guell Crypt: Windows - A Futuristic Vista

These windows with futurist design at the crypt in Colonia Guell, Barcelona are more credible in a manga film, an avant-garde video game or a scifi illustration than drawn from the mind of a visionary architect in the XIX century. Gaudi in his constant search for perfection, beauty, divine inspiration and architectural challenges came out with these sort of armored skylights to absorb as much natural light as possible. The impossible lines of the building, the innovative stained glass work inspired in natural themes, the odd shape of the windows confirm the wonderful, almost supernatural, futurist vista of Gaudian architecture.

April 19, 2007

Catalan Art Nouveau: Modernist House at Colonia Guell

Catalan Art Nouveau: Modernist House at Colonia Guell

We return to architecture. Weird, innovative, futuristic art nouveau architecture. This is not precisely the house of my dreams although I would like to have one of my own with my own garden, my own garage and my own privacy.

Scattered across the neighborhood in the heart of old Colonia Güell, the textile industrial community run by Gaudi's mentor Eusebi Güell, there are modernist houses like this who belonged in most cases to distinguished citizens in the village. Although the workers' houses aren't that bad either.

I guess living in this place which is still inhabited must be quite an advantage since it must be protected by official institutions that want to preserve Catalan cultural patrimony. Real estate business has gone wild nowadays in Spain and particularly in Barcelona so finding a tiny, take-it-or-leave-it apartment is an adventure and a life term bleeding contract.

Having a lot with a brick house like the one in the picture would imply selling your soul to the devil.

April 17, 2007

Modernist Door and Mosaic at Crypt in Colonia Guell

Modernist Door and Mosaic at Crypt in Colonia Guell

So this is the entrance to the crypt in Colonia Guell, the textile complex property of Eusebi Güell. The gates to the sanctuary: a big metal door topped by an elaborate mosaic created using the trencadis technique, that consists of breaking tiles in small shards to compose an image which in this case portraits the Holy Trinity. I gave you enough detail yesterday so if you came here directly check previous post. Both Eusebio Güell and Gaudi were religious men who also had a passion for architecture, in different ways of course. In the case of the Catalan empresario it was more the will to immortalize his name and legacy. As the mosaic is the most remarkable piece in this composition I will show you a detail too.

April 16, 2007

Colonia Guell, Barcelona: Art Nouveau Stained Glass Window

Art Nouveau Stained Glass Window, Colonia Guell, Barcelona Spain

Colonia Guell, was a textile community which was established in 1890 along river Llobregat like many other such water-powered industries. There was an important recession from 1885 to 1890 in this sector. Eusebi Güell, an important Catalan businessman who commisioned Gaudi many of his works (remember Park Guell), had to move his factory from Sants to his lands near the city, the municipality of Santa Coloma de Cervelló at present. In 1880 there were important steam-powered factories near Barcelona, like Can Batlló in Les Corts or La España Industrial and Vapor Güell in Sants that were slowly declining. Antoni Gaudi had started to build a church for all the community inhabitants in Eusebi's estate but it finally ended up as a mere crypt (but what a crypt!) due to the financial problems of his mentor in the middle of this economic crisis. The entrance to the crypt in Colonia Güell is quite similar to the impossible inclined column pattern imitating the aerial roots of trees in Sagrada Familia, in fact this small sanctuary served as a small scaled model for the cathedral. I took this interior picture of the stained glass windows, featuring a cross but also suggesting a big flower as elements of nature were a leitmotif in all of Gaudi's work. The image is taken in a hurry as opening hours are limited due to Mass service. So I only had 10 minutes to madly rush along the oval temple and then run up the external staircase to the unfinished part of the building where the church was supposed to be (there is only a small belfry). I was the last one to come out of the ugly fenced perimeter which makes it impossible to take a decent full scene shot. More to come tomorrow.

March 31, 2007

Park Guell Columns: Mathematical Architecture

Park Guell Columns: Mathematical Architecture

A man playing guitar in the quietness of the 86 Doric columns below the famous terrace where many of you have been chatting and enjoying the view over Barcelona city. The colonnade may look sober in design but it is strong and stable thanks to the mathematical perfection of its architecture. Maybe that is what creates the wonderful acoustics this musician is taking profit of. The ceiling incorporates colorful mosaic plafonds that cannot be appreciated here due to the counter light effect. I liked the way this light pierced through the corridors onto the polished floors. Here is a Google Earth image of Parc Guell and specifically the terrace under which you could listen the melodic notes of this classic guitar musician or many other artists. See also these other pictures at Gaudi All Gaudi. This a digital photo but I used some lab color effect to make it look like film.

February 09, 2007

Barcelona Cultural Heritage Vandalized

Barcelona Cultural Heritage Vandalized
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In yesterday's post I advanced the news published in El Periódico de Catalunya about the criminal acts against Barcelona's cultural heritage. I am talking about the important damage inflicted on one of the main symbols of Gaudi's legacy: The Lizard or Dragon fountain in Park Güell. There are larger pictures in this article via 20Minutos newspaper to compare with this snapshot from my archives. What are we going to show our kids? What goes wrong with society to breed such monsters? Do you think hitting with an iron bar on a beautiful thing is human?. This is not a mere incident, this is a consequence of our own mistakes. Shall we burn that hooligan in hell or shall we teach this kid before it is too late?

January 24, 2007

Moderniste Tower in Park Guell, Barcelona

Moderniste Tower in Park Guell_Barcelona
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No, this is not Disney Land. It is a little older than that. You are watching a tower located inside Park Güell, Barcelona. In fact the spire is part of a house where the park's museum is. It is mostly appreciated by tourists for the furniture designed by Gaudi who used to live there for some time. I have a closer shot which I will show you in the future. Today I think is better to contemplate the harmony between a unique piece of architecture and nature.

January 20, 2007

Tours of Barcelona: Park Guell, A Visionary's Whim

Park Guell Serpentine benches

Like the water that flows through these small gargoyles or spouts connected to a gutter, visitors of all kinds come and go as part of the many Tours of Barcelona to enjoy the architectural design of a master applied to the natural environment of the mountain, in other less pompous words, Park Guell, the whim of a visionary architect, Antonio Gaudi, who was commissioned by Eusebi Güell i Bacigalupi, Count, textile industry businessman, art patron and friend.

Following the Count's idea he was supposed to build a luxury garden city made of private plots surrounded by common greens, based upon a British model by Ebenezer Howard thus the name Park and not Parc as in Catalan. The project was interrupted in 1914. Only three plots had been sold from a total amount of 60. The estate was sold in 1918 by Eusebi's heirs to the city council and became a public park.

Recommended: Some good tips for a Tour in Barcelona can be found in the travel section of The New York Times as Fodor's Choice

January 19, 2007

Park Güell: A Personal Approach

Parc Guell's main entrance in Barcelona, Spain

Here is a sort of mixture between reality and canvas. I exaggerated the frame around the main subject which is the entrance to Park Güell by Gaudi. 

 It looks better from the distance I guess. I have a long way to go till I learn photography. 

 Have a nice weekend everybody.

January 02, 2007

Gaudi Window Fantasy in Park Guell

Gaudi Window Fantasy in Park Guell
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Some "insignificant" details in Gaudi's architecture are difficult to accomodate within the context of his time, take for example this whimsical window that looks torn out of its frame, right at the entrance of Park Güell.

January 01, 2007

Gaudi Animals: Snakes in Park Guell

Gaudi Animals: Snakes in Park Guell
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This is my first 2007 post so who better than Gaudi to emphasize the whole idea of Barcelona Photoblog. A new year of daily pictures begins. In ten months I have known fantastic fellow bloggers all over the world, I have had moments of joy and sadness, days with lots of visitors and days with almost none, but above all I have enjoyed a new experience which is promoting Barcelona through my photographs, rediscovering my own city thanks to your interest, your time and your rewarding visits. Thank you very much, best wishes and Happy 2007!

December 24, 2006

Park Güell: Chocolate, Candy and Marzipan

White Roof House,Park Güell, Barcelona, Spain by Carlos Lorenzo

Remember Hansel and Gretel story where two kids find a house in the woods made of chocolate, candy and marzipan, well maybe you imagined something like this. I don't think Brothers Grimm were alive to see this masterpiece of Catalan modernisme so I guess Gaudi read a lot of fairy tales. 

One of the major works of Gaudí in Barcelona, Park Güell is a public park made of gardens and architectonic elements like this beautiful house with an incredible roof made using the trencadis technique, that consists in breaking tiles to compose a mosaic. As usual Gaudi went beyond many architects of his time and of generations to come. 

December 23, 2006

Gaudi's Lizard at Park Guell, Barcelona

Gaudi's Lizard at Park Guell, Barcelona
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Resuming my visit to Park Güell, and browsing my pictures I found this closeup of Gaudi's lizard with a beautiful tourist in the background. I guess I could have entitled the post as the Beast and the Beauty but I prefer better keywords in my headings. The reason I came this close is simple, the monster (looks like the Big White in famous Jaws jumping out of the water) is so "photo trodden" that you can't hardly take anyone by surprise. From here I would like to thank my anonymous model for her casual appearance in the image.

Recommended: A new tool to search for amazon products called Amaznode. I am not promoting anything here but it called my attention for its innovative performance. Say for example you look up "Gaudi" in the books section, a whole bunch of interconnected thumbs with the book covers in 3d appearance start multiplying in front of your face.

December 05, 2006

Parc Guell: Serpentine Bench in the Afternoon

Parc Guell: Serpentine Bench

Parc Guell is a place to visit early in the morning or late in the afternoon when long shadows and golden rays of the sun magnify the complex geometry in Gaudi's architecture.

Don't let those unique images you take only once in your lifetime be adorned by blown up skies or the strong highlights on the numerous white tiles of the serpentine benches of the famous hallmark in Barcelona.

I thought I had arrived late to the park the other day, even the little museum inside was about to close but once at home and going over my photographs I was very pleased with the light and colors of the vanishing afternoon.

Other posts about Park Guell

November 21, 2006

Trencadis Lizard by Gaudi at Park Guell, Barcelona

Trencadis Lizard by Gaudi at Park Guell, Barcelona

Famous lizard by Antoni Gaudi (1852 - 1926) using mosaic technique called trencadis

According to Wikipedia "Trencadís (Catalan pronunciation: [tɾəŋkəˈðis]) is a type of mosaic used in Catalan modernism, created from broken tile shards. The technique is also called pique assiette. This mosaic is done using broken pieces of ceramic, like tiles and dinnerware" 

So many times photographed, in so many angles, with so many different exposures and cameras. 

This is another must see, so I don't know how you are going to combine Park Güell with Palau de la Música, the tour on the bus, the museums, the restaurants, Sagrada Familia and Las Ramblas (missing something here? I bet I am!). 

If you want to know more about mosaic and particularly Gaudi's or Jujol's work (his collaborator) visit The Joy of Shards.
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