Term Paper: Antoni Gaudi

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Antonio Gaudi source (http://updatecenter.britannica.com/eb/Image?binaryId=83861&rendTypeId=4)

Antoni Gaud's Expiatory Temple of the Holy Family (Sagrada Fam'lia), Barcelona, Spain

Background and formative years

Antonio Gaudi was born in 1852 province of Tarragona in southern Catalonia, Spain. He was the last of five children born to Antonia Cornet and Francisco Gaudi. Possibly the earlier influences that may have led towards his career in architecture was the fact that the family consisted mainly of artisans involved in metalworking. As a child, the young Antonio suffered from arthritis, which affected his school attendance to a certain extent. However, this also provided him with more time for the observation of forms in nature that were to have an influence on his career. His grades at school were not exceptional but he did excel in geometry, poetry and Greek. (a BIOGRAPHY of ANTONIO GAUDI)

An extremely important part of his formative influences was his penchant for religious and spiritual views of life. As one commentator on the influences on his work states;

his religious nature probably came from his schooling with the Escolapius Fathers. At this school, he came to recognize the "value of the divine history of the salvation of man through Christ incarnate, given to the world be the Virgin Mary." Then, later in his life as he worked on the Sagrada Familia, he incorporated many of these beliefs into the architecture.

BIOGRAPHY of ANTONIO GAUDI)

Another aspect that should be noted is the individualistic and original nature of his work, which was evident from the early years. When be began his architectural education in Barcelona in 1873, his drawing and design were described as both "insane " and "genius." (a BIOGRAPHY of ANTONIO GAUDI) He graduated in 1878 and began his career as an accredited architect.

An important aspect of his development as an architect was the influences that he imbibed for the world around him. Commentators note that he received inspiration for his architectural designs from disparate sources, such as medieval and gothic art as well from the organic forms in nature. He was also influenced by sculpture, monuments and music. A major influence in his life was the English social and art critic, John Ruskin. Ruskin's view that, "ornament [is] the origin of architecture" was to have an impact on Gaudi's work. (Antoni Gaud' I Cornet 1852-1926) Gaudi was also influenced the French architect Eugene Viollet-le-Duc, who was a Gothic revivalist. A very significant aspect in his work is the focus on traditional Catalan architecture.

2. Architectural works

Barcelona at the beginning of the Twentieth century has been described as a "...perfect place for a young Gaudi to thrive... "(Resources - Antoni Gaud'). This is largely due to the fact that Catalan independence was emerging in Barcelona as a result of the distancing from the control and authority of Madrid. (Resources - Antoni Gaud'). This creative and independent atmosphere provided the underlying impetus and the opportunity for the original vision that Gaudi brought to architecture. There were also numerous business opportunities and projects available at the time. Furthermore, Gaudi was fortunate in having an influential entrepreneur to support his work in the wealthy industrialist, Eusebi Guell. Guell was to support and commission many of Gaudi's projects.

In more theoretical terms, Gaudi's work is related to the Catalan Modernism movement… [END OF PREVIEW]

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