Spine of the Beast

A Home of the Sea

In Barcelona there is a house called Casa Batlló. It is without a doubt, the most wondrous piece of architecture I have ever seen. I tend to love architectural tours and museums and will frequent as many as I can while in a new city. It gives you a wonderful idea of the past of a place and it also tells you a bit about what has shaped these people. Casa Batlló is an undulating work of genius…or perhaps madness as the two are so close. I can’t imagine the skill of the craftsmen that made this home a reality. Even the doors are curved. Not rounded at the top, but they roll, the whole home reminded me of the ocean. My only regret was that I had to shoot everything handheld. This is the entryway staircase.

Gaudi Schoolhouse

Design School

On the grounds of La Sagrada Familia in Barcelona Spain sits a simple building. It was originally conceived as a schoolhouse for the children of those working to build the (minor) Basilica. I found this work to be more beautiful than the temple itself. La Sagrada Familia is overwhelming, busy, almost ostentatious. I haven’t worked on any of my photos of this treasure of architecture because I found myself so conflicted. I am not sure how I felt visiting. I expected to be in awe, and perhaps that word is accurate, but there was more…there is a harsh difference between Gaudi’s church and the other earlier work. The schoolhouse is simple, practical, elegant. It is in many ways opposite from the site in which it sits. My only regret was it wasn’t open the day I visited the church.

Organic Entry


I love the natural world, the thing is…sometimes I wish it was inside. It’s the forms that I love, but I could do without the bugs and snakes. I think that is why I so love the work of Antoni Gaudi. His forms are so obviously of nature. This entryway in La Pedrera looks (to me) like a cave, the door looks like a tree or a mass of vine at its entrance, the walkway could easily be a spring running through the cave. With sensibilities such as this in architecture one wonders if you would ever need to go outdoors (just kidding).

Terracotta Chimneys

Up on the Roof

I loved Barcelona, Spain. I keep saying that, but honestly it’s worth repeating. The thing that made it for me wasn’t the food, though it was excellent. It wasn’t the people, though they were warm and inviting. It was the amazing architectural master works of Antoni Gaudí. Up until this point, I would have probably pointed to Frank Lloyd Wright as my favorite architect, but after visiting Barcelona I have a hard time making that absolute statement. Surely, their styles are as far apart as night and day, but in each I find a harmony and a craft that I cant help but admire.