Beauty and Playfulness Blend at Gaudi's Casa Mila
This acrylic fridge magnet depicts the roof of the Casa Mila, an iconic example of Modernisme by legendary Barcelona architect Antoni Gaudi. Also known as the "Pedrera" (the "Quarry"), Casa Mila was completed in 1912. From the street, careful observers can note that while the building's facade appears at a distance to be made of simple cut stone like its neighbors, it is in fact a sinuous, gracefully carved surface highlighted by black wrought iron railings. Inside, the beauty continues in a courtyard that seems to spiral up to the roof where, typical of Gaudi, the building erupts into a playful landscape of chimneys that appear more like abstract sculptures than functional apparatuses - a few of these appear on this magnet. Like in all of his structures, Gaudi took a direct hand planning both the internal and external spaces. Doors, floors, railings, light fixtures and air vents were all carefully planned and artfully sculpted by the master architect. Gaudi sought to create buildings that shaped the lives of those that lived within them, for instance he only installed elevator access on every second floor so that neighbors on different floors would come to know each other, socializing in common spaces. Today, Casa Mila is an important tourist destination in the city's Eixample neighborhood, itself famous for its Modernisme buildings. It is owned by the Fundacio Catalunya-La Pedrera which not only opens it for tours, but also hosts numerous cultural events in it and rents out rooms for outside events.