Sagrada Familia in Barcelona

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Sagrada Familia, or The Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Familia, is among the most visited tourist spots of Barcelona. The important landmark of Barcelona is under construction and is expected to be complete by 2041. It means “The Holy Family” and it’s a huge Roman Catholic Basilica in Catalonia Spain. The construction began in 1882 by the famous world renowned architect Antoni Gaudi. The idea for the construction was instigated by Devote Organisation with an aim of bringing a final end to the Barcelonese dechristianization, that was the result of industrialization and accumulating wealth of the city.

The construction of Sagrada Familia began in 1877 by buying land in New Eixample district. The architect that started the project was Francisco de Paula del Villar. However, after one year modern prime architect Antoni Gaudi took over when he was just 32 years old. Gaudi never stuck to the design of Francisco, and kept changing the original plans. He concentrated his design on the forms of nature, and the neo Gothic styles in a modern way. Gaudi died in 1926 and only a single façade, the crypt, one tower, and the apse construction was completed. Gaudi was never constant on his plans and designs and kept changing them often for doing it the world class structure.

The present architects have no idea of what Gaudi wanted to do for the 60 m wide and 95 m long Roman Catholic Church. The few designs that were left by Gaudi were obliterated in the 1936 civil war. The Sagrada Familia has the huge capacity of accommodating aprox. 13,000 people. The structure, as far as the original designs indicates, is supposed to have 18 towers, three facades with four towers on each side that’s supposed to be representing the 12 apostles. The towers will be reaching a height of 394 feet. The four evangelists will be represented by the remaining four towers surrounding the 170 m tall tower bestowed to Jesus Christ. The last tower will be built over the apse and dedicated to Virgin Mary.

After the death of Gaudi in 1926, the construction was stopped due to civil war and lack of funds. The construction then again continued in 1950′ s. The ongoing construction has been focused on the southern façade called the Glory Facade and on the nave; the façade will be depicting the life and death of man. East facing façade is called the Nativity façade and was constructed first and completed by Gaudi himself. Then is the Passion Façade apposite to Nativity façade was constructed in 1954 and the sculpture of Jesus crucifixion was added in 1987.

But this Passion Façade was considered to be too abstract and different from the Gaudi’s creation and got a lot of criticisms. The Sagrada Familia is worth visiting.