|When the Corbusian International Modern style, with its contempt for
ornament, imposed itself on architecture, figures like Gaudí (1852-1926)
were relegated to the sidelines. In this volume, Lahuerta situates
Gaudí in his context and vindicates his fin-de-siècle bohemian modernity.
in such powerful images as the spires of the Sagrada Familia and the
flames rising from burning churches during the Tragic Week of 1909, the
story takes us back to the Barcelona of the early twentieth century,
when class struggle threatened to topple the prevailing capitalist
Drawing on rare original documents collected over several
decades, the author shows that Gaudí was not an isolated eccentric but
an architect who was keenly aware of the key theories and major works of
his time and the creator of revolutionary technical innovations. His
analyses of Gaudí’s writings reveal a pioneer in the use of industrial
processes to produce ornamental details that seem handmade today.
novel was the way that Gaudí exploited his status as a public figure, a
‘media personality’ whose fame is reflected in the many caricatures of
the architect and his buildings in the popular press.
on avant-garde artists like Dalí, who admired the edible appearance of
the Milà house, and Picasso, who was fascinated by the eroticism of the
Batlló house, attest to the importance of Gaudí’s contribution to
This entertaining volume is part of Columns of Smoke, a
series of publications in which Professor Lahuerta turns his perceptive
eye on the official narrative of modernity and its protagonists and the
relationship between architecture, decoration and the print media.