Presentation on theme: "The Passion Façade. Sagrada Familia. Barcelona.. Gaudi’s original drawing. ‘I want it to frighten you!’ ‘I want people to realise that Christ’s sacrifice."— Presentation transcript:
The Passion Façade. Sagrada Familia. Barcelona.
Gaudi’s original drawing. ‘I want it to frighten you!’ ‘I want people to realise that Christ’s sacrifice literally involved the shedding of his blood’. Gaudí draws this façade while recovering from an illness that brought him almost to death. On top, a cross. Under it, the empty tomb of Christ and the descent into hell (two set of stairs with columns).
In Gaudi’s original drawing there was also a cross down the middle of the façade. On one side of it were those in favour of Christ, and on the other side were those against him. The inclined columns are human bones; tibias, framing the Passion. A very different façade for the Passion than for the birth of Christ. One thing is the birth of a child, a very different thing is the death of a man on a Cross. ‘I have begun with the Nativity façade because if I had started with this one, I would not have been able to continue the work’.
Subirachs, the sculptor, proposes to rearrange the scenes of the Passion Façade with the Way of the Cross. The frame, however, is Gaudi’s.
Down the centre, the scene of the flagellation of Jesus. Jesus is tied to the column, but he is also embracing the column. ‘I lay down my life, no one takes it away from me; I have the power to lay it down and the power to take it back’. The column has three blocks with a fourth which is displaced - the stone of the sepulchre out of place, the Resurrection. But Subirachs says something more: he wants to represent the fact that Jesus ‘breaks the old world’. Indeed, with the death and resurrection of Jesus, this world of ours, which appears to be dominated by sin, violence and death, has been overcome! The new Heaven and the new earth where justice will reign, has already begun.
Jesus Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end of all things.
(God) will wipe away all tears from their eyes; there will be no more death, and no more mourning or sadness. The world of the past has gone.’ Then the One sitting on the throne spoke: ‘Now I am making the whole of creation new’ he said. ‘Write this: that what I am saying is sure and will come true.’ And then he said, ‘I is already done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End…’ Rev. 21, 4-6a
On the wall, Subirachs places some mysterious numbers. In the square there are more than 500 combinations which add up to 33 (all the columns, rows, etc): the age of Jesus when he died. But once put on the façade, something else was discovered. There are two numbers that repeat themselves (something very rare in this type of ‘magical squares’): 10 and 14. Their sum, 20 plus 28 = 48, and 48 is the numerical value of the word INRI in Latin (Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews, the title on the Cross). To calculate, remember that in the Latin alphabet there is no ‘J’, so that I = 9, N = 13 and R = 17.
On the right, Jesus carrying the Cross consoles the women of Jerusalem, ‘do not cry for me, cry rather for …’ At the centre, Veronica shows the face of Christ full of blood. She has no face, because she is a legendary figure (she is not in the gospels). On the left, a man in profile taking notes. It is Antoni Gaudí, the evangelist who will later put the Gospel in stone.
Antoni Gaudí, the evangelist who will put the Gospel in stone in the heart of the city. With a clear intention: ‘For the visitor to come away in awe of God’s saving work!’
Jesus Christ nailed to the Cross, inclined over the world because he dies for the world. At the foot of the Cross, Mary, his mother, Mary Magdalene, and the Apostle John. Also at the foot of the Cross, Adam’s skull, symbol of mortal humanity which Christ rescues from death. Being God, by dying he destroys death, which can in no way retain the Author of Life. Naked: the crude reality of the Cross.
Jesus is laid in the sepulchre. Joseph of Arimathea at the head. At the feet of Jesus a man who looks much like Subirachs, the sculptor (with the magnified hand). Above the head of Mary, an egg (potential life): THE RESURRECTION