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Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Barcelona Modernism in All Its Glory

You can thank architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner for the fantastic Catalan Modernism movement that swept the city of Barcelona in the latter part of the 19th century. Utilizing colorful mosaics, stained glass, and ceramics, he allowed a congested and often polluted city to bathe in the beauty of his nature-based designs, a joy to behold to this day. We started with a 40-minute tour of the Palau de la Música Catalana, the concert hall Montaner started to build in 1905. One look at the stunning ceiling and its floral motif, dotted with roses, and you can’t help but be impressed. The building is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with Hospital de Sant Pau, which would be the start of a 3-hour Context Tour on Modernism the following morning. Once a working hospital, the 8 buildings that surround a courtyard are now open to the public and are worth a stop to see the walls plastered in colorful tiles and glass. A 10-minute walk from Hospital de Sant Pau is the masterpiece of the Modernism movement, Gaudi’s Sagrada Família. Still under construction for over 100 years, there is hope that this sensational church will finally be complete in 2026 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s death. The interior is just as magical as the exterior, with twisting columns that climb to the arching ceiling and our guide, Mariana, gave us the perfect introduction to Barcelona’s rich history in architecture. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 04/09/19 at 06:00 AM
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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk.

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