Antonio Gaudi’s Park Güell in Barcelona (see previous posts) has inspired many, including French-American artist Niki Saint Phalle, who created her own interactive gardens of art, combining both artistic and natural elements. Several years ago I took my daughters to see a traveling exhibit of her wonderfully whimsical mosaics at the Garfield Park Conservatory in Chicago. They enjoyed exploring and interacting with the sculptures, while identifying the wide array of textures and colorful materials, including ceramics, glass, mirrors and stones.
Currently, many of the works seen in Chicago are on display in the New York public art exhibit Niki de Saint Phalle on Park Avenue.
I visited Antoni Gaudi’s Park Güell twice while I was in Barcelona, so that I could have time to fully enjoy all aspects of its beauty. The mosaics (see last post), architecture, and landscape of this park are amazing. Gaudi incorporated natural forms in all aspects of the design. Cascades of blossoms among the structures and a lush field of flowers are among the many natural treasures to enjoy while strolling the grounds.
Park Güell was the last private commission of Antoni Gaudi, which he worked on from 1900 -1914, prior to his beginning La Sagrada Familia (see last post). Eusebi Güell commissioned Gaudi to design the entry and park grounds for an exclusive development for Barcelona’s aristocracy. Though the development failed, it is now a public park for all to enjoy. Here is just a small sample of the variety of beautiful colorful mosaics I discovered on the grounds of Park Güell.