Stylized Jesus at La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
What happens when church and Jesus get highly stylized by an architect whose style is so out there they made an English word out of his name? Meet La Sagrada Familia and Antoni Gaudí.
Barcelona was one of the place in Europe I was most excited about, purely because of Antoni Gaudí’s works. To say I’m a fan is an understatement. I absolutely adore his works. Works of Antoni Gaudí as a set is UNESCO World Heritage site — all around and in Barcelona, Spain. I have visited a few, but today I’m going to highlight the magical church La Sagrada Familia — dare I say, the most stylized church in the world?
The construction of the church commenced in 1882, Gaudí involved in 1883, and it’s only less than a quarter finished at the time of his death in 1926. Currently the estimated time of completion is 2026! (If only this is worked on by the Germans.) So when I visited in 2012, we could clearly see the difference between the old parts and the new parts because they were built so way apart.
And where’s that stylized Jesus I lured you with?
There are three Façade: The Nativity Façade was the first to be completed in 1930. In 2012 the Passion Façade (above) has sort of finished from the look of it. Glory Façade is still in the making and it would be the largest of them all!
You can go up the church via one of the towers and have view of Barcelona from the top.
At this point, do you remember the sudoku-like square that I mentioned earlier? It is explained in one of the exhibitions in the church:
“The cryptogram invented by Josep Maria Subirachs is a board with multiple combinations of numbers that always add up tot 33, the age of Chris in the moment of his death.
There are two numbers repeated, 10 and 14; if they are added together the sum is 48, the same result as the addition of the letters of INRI (Iesus Nazarenus Rex Iudaeorum) according to the numerical order of the Latin alphabet.“
La Sagrada Familia is truly a highlight of Barcelona and it started my hunt for more works from Antoni Gaudí. Hope I get a chance to visit again when the church is finished in a decade or two!