Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Sights

We saw so many beautiful things in Spain beginning with the unforgettable work of Antoni Gaudi. I took a class at Weber State from the amazing Alicia Giralt who is from Catalonia and planted a seed of interest in the architectural movement that he helped create.
He is probably most known for the Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Familia which most people just call the Sagrada Familia. I got that picture from the internet because from our perspective we couldn't get it all in the picture.

They started in the construction of this beautiful cathedral in 1882 and it is expected to be completed in 2026.

Unfortunately, after working on it for 15 years, Gaudi was killed in an accident. He didn't leave any plans behind so modern architects are doing their best to guess what he would have wanted.

Brandon said that in the ten years since he last saw it all the pillars have been finished.

Brandon really loved this sign, written in Catalan across the street that says, 'There are some works of art that only take 15 minutes.'

The Pedrera is also one of his great works.


His mosaics and intricate designs are clear from these pictures of Parq Guell. This park surrounded Gaudi's home.







This mosaic was one of many on the ceiling between the columns that held up the plaza surrounded by wiggly park benches.




It would take a million photos to be able to show how amazing his work is.

We were also able to see the Palau de la Musica which is another treasure of modernism designed by Lluis Domenech i Montaner.

I have studied about this concert hall but was completely taken off guard by how breathtaking it was in person.

It was surprising to me that it was nestled right in the middle of apartment buildings which made it a little tricky to get a picture, but luckily there are plenty online so you can get the basic idea.

This is the box office window.

During our trip I felt a little bit like Alice as she wanders through wonderland because it seemed like every time we turned a corner there was something amazing.
Like this, for example.

Barcelona is kind of nestled between two mountain peaks. One day Brandon and I spent the morning exploring one side and the afternoon on the other. The side we started with is called Mont Juic which means Jewish Mountain. This area is considered the artistic hub and also has most of the structures that were built for the 1992 Olympics.
This is where the opening ceremonies took place.

I was a little young during those games, but I do remember when the torch was lit by an arrow shot by an archer.

We found this lovely Flamenco dancer who has definitely put some definition in her arm muscles. Brandon couldn't help but ask for a dance.
From Mont Juic we had a great view of Barcelona. On the right is the Sagrada Familia which shows how big it is in comparison with everything around it. Straight across the city up on the mountain was our next destination.


The other peak, Tibidabo is crowned by a beautiful cathedral which is lit up at night and can be seen from anywhere in the city. The cathedral has a huge statue of Jesus on top and is surrounded, surprisingly enough, by an amusement park.

It has all kinds of interesting statues carved in the exterior.

The afternoon that we spent there was a bright day with a lovely breeze and I was overwhelmed by the beauty of the view.

The road to the top caters to bicyclers who sweat up to the top, then enjoy the coast down. Brandon and I have used our bikes a lot more since we got to Eugene, but we weren't quite ready for that type of climb. Maybe that will be our next 'marathon'.


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