Sorry there have been no updates for a few days – I’ve been away in Barcelona, which was a wonderful place to visit. Many of the buildings there are remarkable, and I’ve enjoyed looking at them all. The city is associated with several famous architects and artists, but my favourite by far was Gaudi. We visited Parc Guell, a funny hillside park with a few buildings and open spaces – it was never finished the way he anticpated, but it’s still interesting. We also toured the Sagrada Familia, a massive and again unfinished cathedral. I knew that it was still under construction, but I didn’t realise just how much work still lies ahead – at this point the interior is pretty much filled with scaffolding, and the roof has only recently been completed. Many of the windows just have plain glass in them, but a few have had modern stained glass panels installed, and they are amazing. You can take an elevator up quite high in the towers of the church, admire the views, and then make your way down the spiral staircase (which can feel claustrophobic, be warned).
Finally, my favourite Gaudi building was Casa Battlo. It’s right in the middle of the city and we stumbled on it on our first day without even trying. The building is all curves and colours – there’s not a straight line in sight, and even the windows are curvy. The roof is all scaly and looks like a dragon. I took quite a few pictures and will have them on Flickr very soon.
On a somewhat related note, I found this article interesting (seen on SVN): it explains how buildings in Chicago, specifically the CNA Center, added messages supporting the Chicago Bears to their buildings by turning off some lights and altering a few shutters. It makes what must be a complicated project sounds so very simple. And this picture of it is fantastic, just look at that if you don’t have time to read the article. (And if you’re at SVN, look at this thread about favourite buildings.)