PASSEIG DE GRÀCIA, Second Part

Audio File length: 2.31
Author: STEFANO ZUFFI E DAVIDE TORTORELLA
English / USA Language: English / USA

Your walk along Passeig de Gràcia begins from Plaça de Catalunya; after the intersection with Carrer del Consell de Cent, look to the left. You'll probably notice some other tourists stopping to look there: in fact, in the same block, one next to the other, there are three symbolic palaces of Catalan modernism. The three buildings are Casa Lleó i Morera, Casa Amatller and Casa Batlló, and the block of buildings they are located in has been dubbed the "block of discord". In fact it makes you think of the myth of the Judgement of Paris, the young Greek who was asked to declare who was the fairest among Juno, Minerva, and Venus, who were the three most important goddesses of Olympus. These palaces right next to each other offer three interpretations of modernism that are so different that comparing them is inevitable: which one will you choose?

Start with Casa Lleó i Morera, designed by the architect Domènech i Montaner, and indulge yourself admiring the fanciful turrets decorating the façade.

After a few steps, or even just by shifting your gaze, you'll see Casa Amatller at number 41, one of the most extraordinary designs by Puig i Cadafalch. Look at the combination of Gothic windows with the step-layered roof inspired by Dutch architecture.

The third building, which is also the most famous, won't fail to capture your attention with its façade that moves like a wave or an aquatic creature: it is Casa Batlló by Antoni Gaudí. MyWoWo has an audio file dedicated to this fascinating monument, which can also be visited inside.

I suggest continuing a few more blocks along Passeig de Gràcia, at least until you reach the other great masterpiece by Gaudí: Casa Milà, also known as "La Pedrera", which stands out as a bizarre fortress at the corner with Carrer de Provença. If you have some extra time, I suggest visiting Fundació Suñol, where you can enjoy seeing photographs by Man Ray, sculptures by Alberto Giacometti, and works by Pablo Picasso.

 

FUN FACT: when Gaudí completed his studies at the School of Architecture in 1878, the director of the university stated: "I don't know if we gave a degree to a crazy man or a genius. Only time will tell". And in fact it did!

And with this we have finished our tour of Passeig de Gràcia. MyWoWo thanks you for staying with us, and will see you at the next Wonder of the World!

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