observe what is, synthesize, and create what will be.

30 Jan

Yesterday, we started at la Pedrera, which is one of the apartments that Gaudí designed.

Some things I found interesting inside the piso:

  1. The floors are uneven. When I looked at the schematic diagram of la Pedrera, I saw that he had drawn topographical lines, which makes sense now after witnessing it as I wander my way up and down the building. I had never seen this design element before for a building.
  2. The chimneys at the rooftop look like Darth Vader’s mask from Star Wars.
  3. The apartment itself was constructed in a way that made me feel as if I was walking inside the skeleton of a human or through a dying vine.
  4. In the floor beneath the rooftop, there were display cases that exhibited scientific artifacts like skeleton ribs, seashells, beehives, skulls, stones, etc. This display of found objects in nature tried to explain where Gaudí drew most of his inspiration for his designs, whether it is in the architecture, furniture, or any other form.

A walk through this exhibit has taught me to look more carefully at the world around me. Great artists do not come up with great works of art out of nowhere. They observe and observe and observe from what exists, lives, and breathes around them, and then synthesize all they have seen to create something new and beautiful for all to appreciate.

I wanted to make sure that I saw the temporary exhibit my art and design professor had mentioned to take a look at–Mariscal’s.


Simone, Brittany, and my version of Mariscal's design

Mariscal’s exhibit was divided into different themes that take you through his work. The first I entered was photocopies upons photocopies of his sketches. I read one of his quotes stressing the importance of carrying a pocketbook for sketching wherever he went because he felt that it was important to capture things you found interesting, whether it was in the texture, the lighting, the shadows, shape, or whatever else. His advice spoke to me and I took from it the use of the sketchbook to train my eye to observe anything and everything, to look closer at the details, so that I can accumulate a bank of design knowledge to draw from as inspiration for the work I go on to create.

Walking through the apartment and through the temporary exhibit, I found myself hearing the same advice only in different ways. I am starting to see myself learning more and more about what I need to do to become a better artist and designer from these visits to the sites of other great artists and learning how they managed and trained their creativity so they can be successful.

Biografía de Mariscal

Des del 1971, aquest valencià nascut el 1950 viu i treballa a Barcelona i passa les vacances a les illes Balears. Aquesta geografia mediterrània ha inspirat el color, la llum i el caràcter de tot el seu treball.

Com a bon dissenyador interdisciplinari que és, té diversos vestits, un per a cada activitat, i tots els porta amb comoditat. Quan es posa el d’artista, expressa el que vol i dibuixa, pinta i gargoteja sense l’obligació de resoldre una necessitat o un problema, cosa que sempre s’exigeix a si mateix quan es posa el vestit de dissenyador.

La seva curiositat per tot i el seu atreviment a l’hora de passar d’un registre a un altre formen part de la seva imatge de marca. La seva promiscuïtat creativa a vegades ha pogut projectar una imatge una mica desenfocada. Amb els anys, però, s’ha anat fent més nítida a força de convertir la intuïció en mètode i les idees en realitats.

Avui, amb seixanta anys complerts, ja pot afirmar sense vacil·lar que el seu ofici és el de dibuixant i que això li permet resoldre els seus treballs i la seva obra artística: bé sigui el Cobi, la mascota olímpica de Barcelona ’92; mobiliari per a productores com Moroso, Magis, Santa & Cole, Nani Marquina o Vondom; el disseny integral del Gran Hotel Domine Bilbao o de la botiga de H&M al Portal de l’Àngel de Barcelona; la identitat visual de Gavà, del Zoo de Barcelona o de l’empresa Framestore de Londres; la imatge i la comunicació de Camper for Kids o de la 32 America’s Cup; la pèrgola escultòrica de l’hospital Río Hortega de Valladolid, o el llargmetratge d’animació Chico & Rita, que s’estrenarà ben aviat.

After la Pedrera, we went to la Sagrada Familia. It was the last day that the visit inside the church would be gratis. We sped through the otherwise long and tedious waiting line to get inside. Stepping past those doors and walking inside the Sagrada, you immediately gasp and stare in awe with nothing to say but an admiration and reverence for how it was constructed. I looked up and admired the ceilings for the longest time and wondered how Gaudí undertook this task of construction. I could see semblances of Gothic design, but that style of design did not define la Sagrada. To me, Sagrada combined shapes and textures drawn from nature with traditional styles, one being Gothic, which define the Gaudí works.

After this day, I am interested to gain more insight into Gaudí’s mind and his style of design. Brittany has this suspicion that he may have been under the influence for him to have concocted these wild and crazy designs.