The Art Nouveau Movement began in the early 1890's as a reaction against the technologies of the industrial age. Free-flowing, curved, biomorphic forms gave inspiration to the architects of Art Nouveau. While technology played a significant role in the influence of most twentieth century architects, Antoni GaudÃÂ's influence was that of the natural world. His works are a reflection of the ideals of the Art Nouveau movement. His genius is expressed through his mastery of capturing movement and organic shapes. However, one would not view GaudÃÂ's works as white noise among Art Nouveau architecture: quite the contrary. Although he is categorized with the Art Nouveau style of architecture, he is in a category unto himself. GaudÃÂ established an individual style of architecture that was incredibly unique not only in his time, but in modern day architecture as well.
Antoni GaudÃÂ was the mastermind behind some of Spain's most remarkable buildings.
Among them are Casa MilÃÂ¡ (1906-1910) and the awe-inspiring La Sagrada FamÃÂlia (1883-1926), which remains unfinished to this day. While Le Corbusier was building "machines to be lived in," GaudÃÂ was building sculptures to be lived in. Because GaudÃÂ worked from detailed drawings of his ideas versus technical plans, his works embody the essence of sculpture.
Located at 92, Passeig de GrÃ cia in Barcelona is GaudÃÂ's Casa MilÃÂ¡; a six-story apartment building arranged around two connected courtyards. At first glance, one would be astonished by the shear presence of the Casa MilÃÂ¡. Without reinforcing walls, brick and stone pillars in combination with iron girders are the sole support of Casa MilÃÂ¡, while simple metal tie rods keep the faÃÂ§ade attached. GaudÃÂ used parabolic, or Catalan, arches to vault the roof atop the building, which can be seen in the uppermost story.
Casa MilÃÂ¡ reflects a somewhat dreamlike, surrealistic quality. Its...