On June 10, 1926, a shabbily-dressed, small, elderly gentleman was struck and killed by a tram in Barcelona. The body was unidentified….

Antoni Gaudi, born June 25th, 1852, famed architect and founder of the Modernisme architectural movement, was emblematic of the soul of Barcelona and Catalonia. He drew his inspiration from nature, as is so evident in all of his buildings. No-one had ever constructed buildings like his and no-one has built them since, although elements of the Moderisme architecture were repeated throughout Barcelona.

The Sagrada Familia (Sacred Family), an architectural jewel, was his challenge, his love, and ultimately, his obsession. The glorious church is never out of view as you move around Barcelona and it becomes impossible to separate your mental image of Barcelona from the Sagrada Familia.

Gaudi’s architectural genius reveals itself in his design. He built a model using inverted arches to determine the weight and balance needed to support the roof allowing maximum, glorious light in the interior.

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Our guide explaining inverted arches

Begun in 1882, construction was ongoing when Gaudi died. It is still being completed today, with the roof finally being added in 2000, funded entirely by tourism. The goal for completion, when the church will have 12 spires rather than the four we see today, is the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s death, in 2026.

We were lucky enough to start our tour of Barcelona with the Sagrada Familia, and went on to see several other of Gaudi’s projects throughout the city including an apartment building, a park and a “gated community.” See if you agree with me that his buildings melt, drip, slither, crawl and glow.

Sagrada Familia

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Darth Vadar inspiration



Casa Mila (nicknamed “La Pedrara” – the gravel quarry):

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Casa Batlio:



Parc Guell (the Serpent Bench):

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On June 11, 1926, Gaudi, obsessed with his beloved Sagrada Familia, barely eating or sleeping and working every day, failed to appear at work. As concern grew, it soon was discovered that this artistic giant was the tiny, gaunt figure struck by a tram the day before. A tragic end to a man whose vision is being fulfilled. The church has been designated a UNESCO World heritage site and in November, 2010, the Sagrada Familia was consecrated as a basilica by Pope Benedict XVI (with over 50,000 people present).  In  2003, the Roman Catholic Church began the beatification process for Gaudi’s sainthood.


3 thoughts on “Gaudi

  1. The images alone take my breath away; it must be so moving.
    Rosa and your group look lovely and fun.
    So happy for you, and Shirley.
    Buenas noches,

  2. Jan: thank you for again letting me travel with you & your friends. Can I join the next journey? I love the way you travel – you tune into all the beauty – man-made & natural. You go girl! Stay safe. Love you. Candy

  3. YES!!! OF COURSE!!!!! We would love to have you join us! We are out in the country in smaller cities/towns and it’s very safe. Love, Jan xoxo

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