Thursday's Child: Park Guell

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Any time we visit a new city, we try to check out at least one of its parks.  Urban parks are often what make a city livable, and ideally should accommodate both tourists and locals.  This month, I’ll write about some of the loveliest parks we’ve had the pleasure to visit.

One of the most enchanting ones was Park Guell in Barcelona, designed by Antoni Gaudi.  If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know how I love Gaudi’s work (I’ve written about La Pedrera  and Sagrada Familla, to name just two).  His park, although quite different from those buildings, was as stunning as anything else he’s designed.


This project reflected Gaudi’s love of nature.  He incorporated natural designs throughout the park, from seashell motifs to the colourful dragon fountain at the entrance.
 


One of the strongest characteristics of the park is the amazing tile work throughout.  Gaudi used cast-off ceramic pieces to create unimaginably beautiful mosaics on everything from the underside of the viaduct to that iconic dragon fountain.  In the central core, tiles decorate the benches that wind, snake-like, through the area.


A footpath under the viaduct is lined with columns designed to look like trees, another way in which Gaudi made the architectural structures in the park mirror the nature around it.  But these columns often contained fanciful designs, as in the photo below:


We loved Park Guell so much that we returned on our last day in Barcelona to see it one more time.  To me, it represents everything that’s great about a city park – it’s unique, and both approachable and challenging.  And it feels like it belongs exactly where it’s built.

18 comments:

Gloria said...

what nice are always your pictures I enjoyed all!

Julie said...

Another wonderful vacation. I love "traveling" with you.

Valerie said...

What a beautifully unusual park! I love it. That dragon at the entrance is gorgeous, I want to put him in my yard. :D

LDH said...

Park Guell is a park filled with unbelievable artistic beauty!

Simply Life said...

I would love to visit there someday!!!

bakewithjill.com said...

I would love to see this! Looking forward to the rest of your posts on parks.

Carol said...

What a beautiful park. It is unique! No wonder you went back again, what a fantastic place. The viaduct is amazing.

Joanne said...

What a perfect place to showcase beautiful artwork! A wide and varied audience gets to enjoy so much in one place.

Belinda said...

One of my favorite spots of all times!!

comfortablydomestic.com said...

I swear that I could stare at mosiacs all day and never tire of it. Gaudi was quite an accomplished architect/designer/visionary.

Elaine said...

I love mosaics and these are beautiful. What a unique park!

Neesie said...

Another great post Beth. I really enjoyed visiting. I haven't actually been to Park Guell in Barcelona so I need to add that to my travel list. :D

julie said...

That is a beautiful park. It's been years since I've been in Barcelona, but Gaudi;\'s work seems to stick with me. His work is so incredibly unique.

Barbara said...

We've been there...loved it so much. Barcelona is an amazing city.

Kayte said...

Such beautiful art everywhere you look...we like to check out parks as well...when the kids were little we always planned parks as a way to stroll about and use up some extra energy and we came across things would never have seen if we hadn't made use of that little technique. Fun to see and read about this, as always.

Pam said...

I am so jealous of all of your traveling... lucky! What an artistic and beautiful park.

Becki's Whole Life said...

I love the tiles and the columns look beautiful! What a beautiful park - makes me want to hop on a plane!

Lizzy said...

Wow, I'm especially impressed by those columns by the viaduct...very cool! Thanks for sharing another great locale with us all...and have a wonderful weekend!

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