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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Casa Battló

Most people go to Barcelona, Spain and head straight for the Sagrada Família and Park Güell.  Both were designed by the architect Antoni Gaudi. Relatively fewer people are aware that a residential property by the same architect is available for visit. Compared to Park Güell and the Sagrada Família, a residential property is smaller and easier to appreciate in its entirety. I saw Sagrada Familia and Park Güell 20 years ago. I decided that Casa Battló would be more easily appreciated by the children. It is easier to link the building back to daily living.

Casa Battló was commissioned by a wealthy industrialist to remodel an existing townhouse. Even though it is a townhouse, it is all of 7 levels tall (if you count the roof terrace). The place is HUGE! It is the strangest house I have ever seen, with skylights that look like turtle shells, mushroom shaped fireplaces and a roof that looks like the back of a vividly coloured dragon. The doors and windows have no straight lines.

Casa Battló from the street. Picture from HERE.

Mushroom shaped fireplace.

Curved doors and windows.

The roof that faces the street is tiled with large format tiles. From street level, the whole roof looks like dragon scales.

The roof that faces the roof terrace is tiled in mosaic. This is because people can approach this side of the roof up close. Up close, it is the small format mosaic that looks like dragon scales.

Glass barriers on the staircase warp the view of the light well that brings light into the house to make it look like one is seeing the light well underwater.

The light well from 2nd floor looks uniformly blue.  To make the whole light well appear a uniform shade of blue from below, the tiles at the top of the light well are a deeper shade of blue to offset the strength of the light up there.

See the deep blue colour of the tiles at the top of the light well.

Casa Battló is also known as the House of Bones. Its facade has pillars that look like femurs.

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