The Templo Expiatorio de la Sagrada Familia (the Expiatory Church of the Holy Family), construction on which was begun in 1882, is today one of the identifying icons of Barcelona, and is known all over the world. The project is expected to be completed in 2026, to mark the 100th anniversary of Gaudí’s death.
The project was initially entrusted to another architect, Francesc de Paula Villar. Gaudí inherited it towards the end of 1883. His new plan was much more ambitious, involving the construction of a church with 5 naves, a transept, an apse, an exterior ambulatory, 3 facades and 18 towers.
This is the most complex and unusual of all of the projects that Gaudí undertook throughout his professional career, and he dedicated 43 years of his life to it.
Wishing to create the perfect church, he presented the life of Jesus and the history of faith. The towers symbolise Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary, the twelve disciples and the four evangelists. The facades portray the three key moments in the life of Jesus: the Birth, Passion and Resurrection of Christ.
As for the structure of the church, it is remarkable for its height and its lightness. It is revolutionary in terms of the building resources used, which characterise Gaudí’s entire life’s work: the catenary arch, sloping columns and hyperboloid vaults.
Gaudí passed away in 1923 without having been able to complete the construction, but various architects have planned and keep working to finish it following the documents left by the genius.
On 7th November 2010, Pope Benedict XVI visited Sagrada Família, conceded his blessing and consecrated it as a Basilica.
We share this video that shows us the entire process of construction of the Temple, from today’s reality to what’s expected for the next 2026.