b. 15.12.1928 d. 19.02.2000
Hundertwasser was a Viennese born artist known not only for his artwork but also for his work in architecture. His buildings can probably be described as works of art in themselves due to his artistic approach. Vienna unsurprising is home to some of his most noteable works. The most famous of which the Hundertwasser house. Hundertwasser also spent part of his life living in New Zealand. A few years ago I had the opportunity to stop at a very popular tourist destination. The Hundertwasser toilets on New Zealand’s North Island which, safe to say were unlike any toilets I had ever seen before!
Montjuic Telecommunications Tower – Santiago Calatrava – 1992
Designed for the Olympic Games hosted by Barcelona in 1992. The tower’s main purpose was functional (to transmit television coverage of the games). Calatrava added his own sculptural style to produce a tower of both functional and aesthetic value. This eye-catching tower that has now become one of Barcelona’s landmarks can be seen from various points throughout the city. As well as being a beautiful piece of sculpture representing the Olympic Games from afar what you don’t see unless close up is it’s white base (seen at the bottom of the photo). After visiting the tower I learned that the white mosaic (trencadis) base was designed specifically to pay homage to Antoni Gaudi, one of the city’s master architects.
b. 25.06.1852 d.10.06.1926
Gaudi was a Catalonian born Spanish architect and is most famous for his works in Barcelona. Gaudi’s style was very distinctive and his designs were very advanced for the time using references to nature in much of his work. religion was also a key factor for Gaudi and evidence of this can be seen in his extremely detailed designs for his cathedral, the Sagrada Familia. Gaudi’s work was very influential in the Spanish ‘Modernisme’ design movement which became the Spanish equivalent to ‘Art Nouveau’.
Calatrava is a Spanish born architect famous for his very sculptural style.
This is the only piece of Calatrava’s work that I have been lucky enough to see
Although this is the only one of Calatrava’s works that I have actually seen, I have seen many others in books and I really hope that one day I get to see some more of his work.
Canadian/American architect Frank Gehry is famous for his contemporary architecture and sculptural instillations that can be seen all over the world. His works include the Guggenheim in Bilbao Spain and works that I have been lucky enough to see in New York and in Sydney. Gehry has a very distinctive sculptural element to his work. It is easy to spot a Frank Gehry building in a crowd. As one of my personal favourite contemporary architects I have only seen three of his works so far, two of which sculptural instillations so I am looking forward to seeing some more of his work.
b. 27.03.1886 d. 17.08.1969
Mies van der Rohe was a pioneering German architect whose work was at the forefront of the modernist design movement. Mies van der Rohe was the director of the Bauhaus school of art and design from 1930-1933. After leaving Germany he moved to America where he was able to realise his dream of building a skyscraper, something that was not possible in Germany ( in the war years under Hitler’s reign over Germany).
He became the head of an architectural school in Chicago, and continued his work in the USA.
I think every person who reads this will know something of the work of Mies van der Rohe, either by his famous Barcelona chair (commonly seen in black).
Or by his very famous quotes:
“God is in the detail” Mies van der Rohe
Wait for it, this one you will definitely know:
“Less is more” Mies van der Rohe
The Golden Fish – Frank Gehry – 1992
Designed by Frank Gehry, another of my favourite architects. I was very happy to add this to my collection of Gehry buildings and scupltural installations.
Park Guell – Antoni Gaudi – 1914
Gaudi was commissioned by his good friend Eusebi Guell to design the park and the individual residences that were due to be built here.
The land was bought by Guell and his intention was to build a community for the wealthy of Barcelona in a natural setting outside of the city. Designs for the park were based upon the idea of the English garden cities, whereby people could escape the urban city life and live in a more natural environment. 60 plots were due to be built in this parkland setting. The development was eventually stopped by Guell in 1914 for a number of reasons, largely due to Guell’s strict restrictions on the site. The main being that he would not allow public transport into the park which made the park very difficult to access, and put people off buying plots on the site. The park remained as it is today and upon Guell’s death was bought by Barcelona council and opened up as a wonderful public space that is now a UNESCO World heritage site.
Some pictures taken from the park’s outskirtsThis was the home of Eusebi Guell and was the only property already on the land when it was bought by Guell in 1885.
The two buildings above are the only designed by Gaudi, the porters lodge (left) and the administration building for the site (right)
The two buildings above are the only two are the only plots that were sold, neither were designed by Gaudi. The pink building on the left was eventually bought by Gaudi. He lived there with his niece and it is now a Gaudi museum. The house on the right was built on two of the park’s plots and it sits on the hillside on the outskirts of the park. It is privately owned and is still owned by the family that bought the original land.
A few examples of the many details of this spectacular park
Perhaps the most glorious park of the park is the serpentine bench shown above and below in more detail.
Guell Palace – Antoni Gaudi – 1888
The stunning rooftop is one of the many amazing feature of this building. Designed by Gaudi for his friend Eusebi Guell this is one of the many projects that Guell commissioned Gaudi to design.
The detail in this incredible building is not only present on it’s rooftop, but from the very beginning with its entrance and continues up through all six floors until you reach the stunning finale.
the above are all details that can be found at the buildings entrance.
Even the stables are amazing.As we move up the building it only gets better.