Thursday, June 7, 2012
The House of Bones — Casa Batllo
Restored and remodeled by the Spanish modernist architect Antoni Gaudi in the years 1905–1907, Casa Batllo is now one the most overlooked buildings by the tourists who visit Barcelona. Although Casa Batllo is a museum now, Gaudi designed it for for a wealthy Barcelona Aristocrat.
The local name for the building is Casa dels ossos (House of Bones), and indeed it does have a visceral, skeletal organic quality.
Close up of Casa Batllo chimney :: Photo Credit: WikiMedia
Casa Batllo’s roof has been compared to a reptilian creature, the backbone of a gigantic dinosaur, the dragon killed by St. George (Sant Jordi being the patron saint of Catalan).
It seems that the goal of the designer was to avoid straight lines completely. Much of the facade is decorated with a mosaic made of broken ceramic tiles that starts in shades of golden orange moving into greenish blues.
Casa Batllo arched roof and complex chimney detailing :: Photo Credit: WikiMedia
From the balconies resembling the bones of animals to the scale like surface of the front facade, the building is a tour de force of an artist reaching the peak of his powers. At night the floodlit facade has an iridescence like the scales of a fish. This polychromic finish is known as trencadís.