Antoni Gaudi: Architect and Engineer

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Sculture by Antoni Gaudi.
Ellen admiring Gaudi string sculpture

At right I am looking at a model to implement building cathedral spires. Antoni Gaudi built such models of spires with string and weights.

He thought that if he built a cathedral with a spire just as it appears in the mirror below the model, it would be stable.1

This innovation shows engineering spirit behind Gaudi’s architectural façade.

Antoni Gaudi is Dead, But…

[The] Sagrada Familia (Sacred Family) is pictured below-left. It was designed by Gaudi and shows such spires. It is in Barcelona, Spain, as are many other Gaudi architectural constructions.

The front of the building shows scenes of Jesus’ birth, and the back shows scenes of his death. Gaudi is dead, and the cathedral remains unfinished.

Antoni Gaudi designed church.

I don’t think I would be comfortable living in one of Gaudi’s homes. They are too strange. But it was very rewarding to make a pilgrimage to Barcelona to see his masterpieces.


1 This concept of the string being pulled by gravity to create a structure caught my attention. Imagine reversing the gravity on a rigid structure shaped exactly like this flexible structure, upside down. – Editor.

Note: You might also enjoy Exquisite Russian Composer Vasily Sergeyevich Kalinnikov


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2 thoughts on “Antoni Gaudi: Architect and Engineer

  • Ellen

    Having just returned from a trip to Barcelona and seen firsthand the majesty of Gaudi’s crazy design for the Salgarde Familia Basilica, I was interested to read of your comments about his string sculpture. The inversion of what is normal (what is that!) when building…from the floor upwards…why not from ceiling down…any caver sees this regularly in stalactites and stalagmites. Alvin Alschuller, who gave his name to a problem-solving tool called TRIZ, advocated this. upside-down thinking as a way of generating new designs and products. Just a thought!
    Kind Regards. Alastair McKinna, Researcher & Lecturer, Faculty of Engineering, University of Huddersfield.

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