The report is courtesy of the Sagrada Familia Temple Building Committee.
Jordi Bonet i Armengol
We must still solve the technological problem of cutting the granite of the columns. The life-size study in situ of the superior part of the three first columns is progressing. One will see the words Jesús de Natzaret rei dels jueus – “Jesus of Nazareth, king of the Jewish” on it.
The interiors of the apse chapels have been cleaned and restored and the aspect offered by the transition of its Neogothic architecture with the “new Gaudinian architecture” shows a harmony which we consider very appropriate. It is not possible yet to contemplate it entirely because of the scaffoldings which support the work platform of the vaults and represent a surface of some 300 m2.
The apse stairways are progressing even with the typical difficulties
of the unification between the new constructions and those of a more than
a century ago. Besides, one is studying the problems provoked by the upset
between the triforiums coming from the Birth Façade and which will
allow entering via these stairways the cantoria surrounding the apse.
These difficulties arise because of the different sizes of the four transept
angles. We have been obliged to make several computer drawing studies
as well as wax and plaster scale models in order to obtain the most appropriate
solution for some of the details which we don’t dispose the original
TRANSEPT and CROSSBEAM
Subsequently one has placed the work platforms which were missing in order to be able to start the perimeter part of the vaults at a height of 60 m.
The windows of the central east nave have been placed. They represent Jesus, the light and source of bright water, work of J. Vila Grau.
Gaudí wanted them not to be coloured so that they would not disguise the colours of the paving stones and the in green and gold trencadís, which represent the palm leafs and cover the architectonic shapes that generate the straight lines of the hyperboloids.
The two stairways of the front beginning from the plane part of the Temple reach the height of the Jube.
MOLD MAKERS ATELIER
One is studying the union between the big windows surrounding the dome of the Virgin, the dismantling of the rainwater and the very complicated and difficult connection of the flights of the vaults that close the area between the columns dedicated to the apostles Peter, Paul, Matthew and James the Youngest. Finally, the coverings of the east and west transepts are being prepared with scale models.
We must also add that one has helped to assembly of the scale models
in the different exhibitions where one has collaborated Bremen and Rotterdam.
As the small course of the computer programme “catia”
is finished, four architects that participated in the course have been
incorporated at the Office on a trial period, in order to amplify the
specialised personal that helps working on the progress of the crossbeam
project, the apse, the room which will be built between 60 and 85 m and
on other very necessary investigation tasks.
The discovery in the municipal archives of the only existing Temple plans signed by Gaudí at the end of 1916, with its entire silhouette seen from eight different points, has allowed us to know the heights of the ciborium of the Virgin and the one of the Evangelists. Concretely Gaudí had always planned that the spire dedicated to Maria with a height of 120 m to would a bit lower than those of the evangelists.
We must underline that the whole of the five crossbeam domes with the central which will crown the cross and which is dedicated to Jesus Christ and the four evangelists represent Jesus and express his word. So it’s not strange that they should not go beyond the one of the apse dedicated to Saint Maria. Only some posterior drawings had raised this dome which Gaudí had projected lower.
The 20 m height reduction of this dome is important, because it permits us not to have to lift the fundaments of the apse, built by architect Villar for a different project.
It is also interesting to mention that the texts published in German in the catalogue of the exhibition in Bremen contribute some new aspects about the interest Gaudí has aroused among some of the German architects who dealt with him during the last years of this life. It are little known aspects about Gaudí that show him as a commutative and affable person who posed innovating ideas during conversations, as someone who was capable of self-criticism and able to explain with conceptual clarity the reason for his actions in the Temple and to open his vision about many realities in life a the same time.