Barcelona: The Queer Exteriors Of La Sagrada Familia.

Gaudi's mark on this wonderful city is in many places. Which is one of the reasons this city is so fantastic.

"You must see La Sagrada Familia!" two friends wrote to me on Facebook. Another wrote that he was "fascinated by that place."

And it's easy to see why.

Later, after I'd walked all the way back to my hotel, I checked the number of photos I was uploading to my computer from the day. There were well over 500. And only 150 of them were from the Casa Batllo visit earlier in the day.

Which is why I found myself looking at the whole structure of the basilica in two different ways:

  • Interior
  • Exterior

You could sit and stare at either one for hours, I am certain. (I mean, I don't know if I could be friends with you if you felt any differently.) And I decided to write about each separately, because of the large number of photos I collected for each.

And we'll start with my favorite one...

I found this grouping of letters on the facade of the current entrance. I found it amusing on one hand... But also appropriate in the sense that the building itself is somewhat strange. Which is what I love about it.

I mean, it's an intimidating building when you first come upon it. There's so much going on with the exterior. So many vignettes carved into the stone...

I don't find it "haunting" at all... But as with Gaudi's other work (yes, he was the originating architect with this), it's "dreamlike." Very gothic. But (the inside especially) whimsical.

It was very clear, looking at all of the exterior, that religion factored greatly into Gaudi's life. There was tremendous detail the architecture, the glass work, and the statues.

Despite everything going on with the exterior, never once did I feel overwhelmed. It was easy to take all of the strangeness in and love it.