Sunday, May 29, 2011

Architectural Addendum: Subirachs at Sagrada Familia

As a small addendum to the previous entry, a word about the more recent additions to the facade of Sagrada Familia. 
1. Subirachs sculpture on Sagrada Familia.
The recent monumental sculptural expressions on Sagrada Familia (the Passion Facade) are not designs by Antonio Gaudi. They are the works of Barcelona sculptor Josep Maria Subirachs. To architectural critics his work is not Gaudi-esque enough; some call it cold and unemotional. I find this assessment flat-out wrong. 

Subirachs work does not mimic Gaudi's style, nor should it. It is completely original and fitting. It is a continuation of the themes established by Gaudi without slavish imitation. (Just as Gaudi imitated no one before him.) 

I am proud to have two examples of Subirach's work in my collection. One is a lithograph by the artist showing his drafting table in the foreground with his design for a knight sculpture used in Sagrada Familia; in the middle ground is the rooftop and chimney caps of Gaudi's La Pradera, the inspiration for Subirachs' knight. Sagrada Familia is portrayed in the distance. The second is a wood carving which Subirachs executed as a study for his knight. Both are treasured gifts from Bill McDonough, purchased at Subirachs home in Barcelona. (Subirachs actually spends most of his time at Sagrada Familia, where he lives and works on site. Bill met Subirachs there and was introduced to his son, Dani, who was authorized by the elder Subirachs to sell these works to Bill.)  
2. Subirachs lithograph. (Numbered 50 of 75.)
3. Subirachs wood carving.
1. Rob Munger
2. M. Knorr
3. M. Knorr

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