La Pedrera

La Pedrera

The last lay building of Antoni Gaudí, Casa Milà (popularly known as La Pedrera) has no straight line. It is a daring feat of architecture and the culmination of the architect’s experimental attempts to recreate natural forms with bricks and a mortar (in addition to pottery and bottles of broken cava, which is called trencadis). It is a World Heritage Site and has a marine air through entangled balconies, seaweed gates, sea foam ceilings and interior courtyards as blue as a mermaid’s cave.

When it was finished, in 1912, it was a work so modern for its time that the woman who financed it, Roser Segimon, became the laughingstock of the city. Santiago Rusiñol said, on the undulating facade, that a snake would be a domestic animal more than adequate for the owners of the building. Even so, La Pedrera has become one of the most beloved buildings in Barcelona and the architects adore it for its extraordinary structure: there is no master wall and the wide and asymmetrical windows of the facade get a lot of natural light.

There are three exhibition spaces. The art gallery on the first floor houses a good diversity of artists. The space above offers a better appreciation of Gaudí: you can visit a modernist apartment rebuilt on the fourth floor, with the bedroom suite of Gaspar Homar. The attic, framed by parabolic arches worthy of a Gothic cathedral, houses a museum about the career of Gaudí. The best thing is that you can walk on the roof of the building between chimneys covered with trencadís and whose top recreates a medieval knight’s helmet, hence the poet Pere Gimferrer call it ‘the garden of the warriors’.

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