Curious facts about Gaudi, the most researched Spanish architect


There is not a single tourist who, when visiting Spain, does not stop to observe the architectural wonders that he has given to the country. His greatness is due to his innate talent, the same one that he developed by initially adhering to modernism, and later adhering to the avant-garde trends of his time.


Curious facts about Gaudi, the most researched Spanish architect

As a result, he was a master when it came to the studies of the behaviour of materials, as well as a dedicated student of traditional styles.

In this article, we’ll cover some fun facts about the visionary architect who forever changed the look of modern architecture.

Gaudi was born in Reus (Tarragona) in 1852. Member of a family of industrial boilermakers, who always encouraged the artist to dedicate himself, from an early age to painting and architecture, but with an innate interest in the use of materials such as iron and stone. For this reason, he later studied at the Barcelona School of Architecture, the city where he captured all his architectural wonders. There he built his first building (Casa Vicens), and began in 1883 what would become his life’s work: “La Sagrada Familia”, which I cannot finish and which still remains unfinished.


Did you know that Gaudi….

1. He was never a brilliant student.

This does not mean that he did not have a rich imagination and revealed his talents. Because at only 15 years old, together with two classmates, he drew up a plan to restore the Poblet Monastery and at only 17 years old he received his first commission; a private house-type chalet (casa Vicens), in Nou de la Rambla street 76-78 in Gròcia (Barcelona).


2. He suffered from rheumatoid fever since childhood.

Having to lie in bed for a long time made him a shy and introverted child, but that could have triggered his genius.


3. He was a real dashing young man

Gaudi liked to dress well, wear expensive suits, wear good shoes, shave his hair and beard perfectly, enjoy good food and drink, see theatres and operas, put on plays in carriages, etc. . Until old age when extreme simplicity became his way of life.


4. He was commissioned by the Holy Family when he was only 31 years old.

The original project was neo-Gothic until Antonio Gaudi took over a project that he had already started. He will work on it until the end of his life. He knew that the project would have to continue without him, and he planned and wrote descendants, most of whom were lost during the civil war.


5. He was a vegetarian

Also, a follower of Dr Kneipp’s hygienic theory, he fasted at times and was also associated with established religion, so severe that he risked his life.


6. “We gave the title to a lunatic or a genius.

Time will tell”. These words were pronounced by Elias Rosent, director of the Barcelona School of Architecture when awarding the degree to Gaudi.


7. He modelled for a friend and artist Joan Llimon.

The artist was commissioned for several paintings of various scenes of Saint Philip Neri and asked Gaudi to serve as a model for the face of the saint, and he agreed, so that we can see his face in this church in Barcelona.


Curious facts about Gaudi, the most researched Spanish architect

8. He was attracted to only one woman in his life.

This genius gave himself completely to his profession and religion, and once he felt attracted to a woman named Josef Moreu, a teacher at the Matarón cooperative, but he never reciprocated.


 9. Beaten and detained by the police.

Gaudi has always declared himself a fervent supporter of the Catalan language, despite not being affiliated with any party, and on September 11, 1924, during a demonstration against the dictator Primo de Ribera’s ban on the use of the Catalan language, he was beaten and arrested. . He was arrested by the police and released after paying a bail of 50 pesetas.


10. No one tried to help him after the tram hit him.

On June 7, 1926, when he was going to the church of San Felipe Neri, as he did every afternoon, Antoni Gaudi was run over by a tram, he was poorly dressed in old-fashioned clothes and without identification, so no taxi driver could see him. I take it to the hospital thinking that I could not pay it. In the end, a policeman took pity on him and transferred him to the Hospital de Santa Cruz, a hospital for the poor, where he died two days later.


But as everyone knows Gaudi is the most renowned Spanish architect of all time. He was born on June 25, 1852 in Reus, a town near the city of Tarragona in Catalonia. He became famous for his unique and eclectic designs, as well as his labyrinthine creations and striking nature-inspired style. His masterpieces can be found all over the world, but also in Spain, specifically in Barcelona, where he spent most of his adult life.

Gaudi’s work has become so emblematic of Barcelona that many non-Catalans might assume that the city is quintessentially Gaudíesque. In fact, there are so many Gaudi buildings in Barcelona some say you could almost walk from one to the other without passing an apartment or office building designed by another architect, although this is an exaggeration it is true that this architect had a very fruitful.

What would the world be like without the gothic style? What if there were no French Gothic cathedrals? Perhaps then we would not have so many fairy tales and fantasy, but this would also mean that there would be no New York, Notre Dame de Paris or the Sagrada Familia.

This architect changed the way of seeing buildings forever. He introduced a new style, known as “Gaudiness,” which continues to be admired by people around the world.

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