“The straight line belongs to man, the curved one to God”

Park Güell from the front
Park Güell from the front

One of the best places to see a lot of Gaudí’s work is at Park Güell. It was intended to be a housing community in which Gaudí actually designed a couple model homes. The community never took off, but Gaudí lived in one of the houses for many years himself. The park is full of his most famous technique, trencadis: using crushed pieces of ceramic to mosaic-tile a sculpture of another shape. This technique is everywhere in the park – on benches, walls, ceilings, windows. The forms are meant to echo nature, and everything is very colorful.

Views of the Monumental section of the Park
Views of the Monumental section of the Park

Park Güell is also quite crowded – as one of the Gaudí masterpieces, it’s one of the biggest tourist draws in the city. But to preserve the World Heritage site, they only let 400 people in at a time on a stamped ticket system. If you go, I recommend purchasing your ticket for a certain time on the web before you go. When I was there for my 2:30 tour, many people were waiting around to get into the next available timeslot at 5:30pm.

Window in one of the houses at Park Güell.
Window in one of the houses at Park Güell.
Detail of the pansy mosaic at the top of the main stairs
Detail of the pansy mosaic at the top of the main stairs
There is a free section of the park where you can go without a ticket, but the majority of the best views and the artwork is in the ticketed section.
"El Erac" the famous lizard, one of Gaudí's signatures.
“El Erac” the famous lizard, one of Gaudí’s signatures.
Gaudí’s home in the park is now a museum to his life and works. The park is also up on a hilltop, so you can see wonderful views of Barcelona after you climb up there. It’s worth visiting, regardless of whether modernisme is your thing.
Detail of the benches at the top of the Monumental section
Detail of the benches at the top of the Monumental section
Stairs lead down from the top part of the Monumental section into this columned area
Stairs lead down from the top part of the Monumental section into this columned area
The top of Gaudi's house at the park
The top of Gaudi’s house at the park
Gift Shop at the Park
Gift Shop at the Park
The column section is covered in white broken-ceramic mosaics... it's a stark place.
The column section is covered in white broken-ceramic mosaics… it’s a stark place.
Column area from the front
Column area from the front
The various mosaics catch the light in a way a single sheet of ceramic wouldn't.
The various mosaics catch the light in a way a single sheet of ceramic wouldn’t.
I'm not sure which animal this is, but he's clearly Spanish... or Catalan... OK, details are scarce all around.
I’m not sure which animal this is, but he’s clearly Spanish… or Catalan… OK, details are scarce all around.
Mosaic detail - the patterns and colors are extensive
Mosaic detail – the patterns and colors are extensive
Each ceramic section made me wonder what the original pieces were before they were used in Gaudí's work
Each ceramic section made me wonder what the original pieces were before they were used in Gaudí’s work
Tunnel at the Park.
Tunnel at the Park.
This staircase in the free section of the park leads up to the hills above and great views of the city
This staircase in the free section of the park leads up to the hills above and great views of the city
Detail of the catacomb section in the free part of the Park
Detail of the catacomb section in the free part of the Park
The top edge of the Monumental section with the outer edge of the benches that go around the top
The top edge of the Monumental section with the outer edge of the benches that go around the top
More ceramic details from the outside of the benches
More ceramic details from the outside of the benches
View of Barcelona from the Park Güell
View of Barcelona from the Park Güell
View of Barcelona from the Park Güell
View of Barcelona from the Park Güell
Another detail of Gaudí's home at Park Güell
Another detail of Gaudí’s home at Park Güell
Stairs lead down from the top part of the Monumental section into this columned area
Stairs lead down from the top part of the Monumental section into this columned area
Title quote: Antoni Gaudí

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s