Tag: Sagrada Família

Is the Sagrada Família prepared to withstand an earthquake?

To calculate his structures, Gaudí innovated with the empirical, experimental method of suspended chains. By inverting the image in a mirror, these gave him not only the best geometry for the project, meaning the angle the columns and walls should have to withstand compression forces, but also a way to measure the force on each …

Saint Joseph, an important day for the Sagrada Família

Work on the Sagrada Família began on this day 136 years ago. It was 19 March 1882, on the feast of Saint Joseph, when the cornerstone of the Temple was laid in an event with all the required honours featuring top civil, political, religious and military leaders, as can be seen in this engraving from …

Galera, the making of the Sagrada Família

Eighty kilometres from Barcelona there is a small village with little more than fifty inhabitants nestled among green mountains dusted with snow in winter. The seemingly calm surface, however, belies the incessant activity under way and its international scope. There, at the end of an unpaved side road that also leads to a horse-riding school, …

Technology and craftsmanship coexist at the Sagrada Família: iron and stone

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At the Sagrada Família, the artisan trades that were traditionally used can be seen in many facets that co-exist with the more technological side, representative of the current era. This contrast, which has been accentuated in recent years, makes the Temple building project unique, as we have works here that are nearly unheard of on …

Reinforced concrete for the Temple? Of course!

Many times, looking at the work currently under way on the Sagrada Família, visitors wonder what Gaudí would have done without reinforced concrete. One could even think that the architects today, with all this reinforced concrete, are cheating because Gaudí only used stone. And that would be a grave mistake. The fact is, reinforced concrete …

The magic square on the Passion façade: keys to understanding it

While admiring the Passion façade and all of Subirachs’ sculptural work, more than once visitors are surprised to discover a series of numbers inside a square and wonder what they mean. Well, it is a magic square, but in this case, it is a very special one. In this article, we’ll try to explain why. …

The rooftops: from Gaudí’s plaster model to the executive project

Historically, temple roofs have been made of wood or stone. The first option takes a lot of weight off the structure and transfers the load vertically to the support walls but, despite the advantages, this material requires constant upkeep and the risk of fire limits its lifespan. This is why roofs tend to be made …

Where do the stones being used to build the Sagrada Família come from?

Like most historical buildings in Barcelona, the Basilica of the Sagrada Família was originally designed to be built mostly with the most suitable stone available, in terms of proximity, strength and resistance to weathering. Chosen, in other words, for its durability. And all of these requirements were met by what is known as Montjuïc stone, …

The Sagrada Família, a repository of other Gaudí projects

Antoni Gaudí came into contact with the architecture profession well before earning his university degree: he worked as an assistant to Josep Fontserè on the project for the Parc de la Ciutadella, with Francisco de Paula del Villar on the throne of Our Lady of Montserrat, and with Joan Martorell, who was the one who …