June 4, 2013

0668 SPAIN (Catalonia) - Palau Güell - part of Works of Antoni Gaudí (UNESCO WHS)

This Palau Güell, one of the most luxurious of Barcelona, was commissioned to Antoni Gaudí by his main patron and lifetime friend, Eusebi Güell i Bacigalupi, Count of Güell, The architect started the project around 1880 and signed it in 1886, and the building, placed close to La Rambla, in an area  that in this period was the center of Barcelona, was developed between 1886 and 1888, although the decoration wouldn't finish until 1889. The palace was the Güell residence for a while, much later, in 1945, being sold by the count's daughter to the Diputació de Barcelona (Provincial government of Barcelona).

This palace was built with the biggest quality materials, basically in stone recovered with marble and decorated with the most delicate furniture and artistic objects. The exterior shows a main facade with a very sober aspect, built in stone of clear gray color coming from the count's quarries in Garraf. The back façade also of great sobriety, presents an original design based on a tribune with wooden Venetian blinds and adorned with a beautiful ceramic, on first floor and in the second floor it is a balcony decorated with a surprising pergola.

The interior surprises with lots of elements of luxurious aspect reflecting the good taste and the architect's originality. The most interesting piece is the surprising central living room crowned by a parabolic dome surpassing the roof in conic form (it is in the postcard). The ceiling of that lounge is perforated by circles that, under the daylight, give it, from the interior, a planetarium appearance. The roof with its eighteen chimneys and conical vents remembering small fir trees. In this work, Gaudí used the trencadis for the first time (lining of surfaces with irregular mosaic fragments, that later was broadly used in the Modernisme).

Palau Güell is a UNESCO World Heritage Site from 1984, as part of the Works of Antoni Gaudí, about which I wrote here.

About the stamps
The first stamp, depicting Monumentos de Oviedo - La Foncalada (Monuments of Oviedo), is part of a series dedicated to the World Heritage Sites (Patrimonio mundial de la humanidad), about which I wrote here.

The second stamp is part of the series Arte Contemporáneo - Manolo Valdés (Contemporary Art - Manolo Valdés), issued on July 18, 2012, which contain four stamps (all with the same face value: 0,51 EUR), depicting just as many works by this Spanish artist residing in New York:
• Perfil con Fondo Azul (painting) - It's on the postcard 0809
• La Infanta Margarita (sculpture)
• Reina Mariana XII (sculpture) - It's on the postcard 0683
• Vivianne III (painting) - It's on the postcard 0668

Palau Güell - Wikipedia
Palau Güell - non official website

Sender: Fabienne (direct swap)
Sent from Madrid (Madrid / Spain), on 25.09.2012
Photo: Pere Vivas

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