Sitting in the Segrada Familia I feel like I experienced a soul-touch that I never felt in any church before; perhaps my inner spirit speaks modernist more fluently than Gothic.
I have been inspired to awe in churches around the world, the soaring spaces of Notre Dame, the somber beauty of the church of Santa Maria del la Mar here, near our home away from home, the confectionary delight of the altars and retablos of the Mexican colonial cathedrals. But something clicked in me upon walking into this amazing space, a feeling that no photograph or drawing can capture, the scale and layers of light and space are simply too complex -- and too simple, too.
The scalloped shapes and pointed rays have a dance going on. The detail and contrast of the work of all the artisans and workmen, carvers and ironworkers still working from Antoni Gaudi's vision and plans are the closest I will come to that experience many must have had over the ages as those Gothic Cathedrals were constructed. So the sounds of chisels and cranes mingle with the recorded organ music, making a counterpoint of time and sound in the vast parabolas of space.
As we have settled here out of the heat to watch and write, the angle of the sun outside has changed and the space with it, reflected greens from the window above us show up with purple hues on the columns, the families of columns, each clan a different stone and a different shade of grey/pink/taupe, ever changing. The timelessness and the temporal, the infinity of patterns, this space is like looking into a mirror reflecting another mirror.
The feeling for me truly is that of a forest, perhaps one sent from another planet. I wish all the people here would really take the silence please signs to heart, but that is too much to hope for. I think we will try to come back for mass one evening.