CLOSE

The First House Antoni Gaudí Ever Designed Will Soon Become a Public Museum

When Antoni Gaudí was 31, he designed his first house: a vividly colored, Eastern-inspired residence in Barcelona called Casa Vicens, which was completed in the late 1880s. Originally a summer residence for tile manufacturer Manuel Vicens i Montaner, the home was privately owned for over a century. Now, Hyperallergic reports that the four-story structure will be opened to the public for the first time ever this October, as a cultural center dedicated to the famed Catalan architect.

Casa Vicens was sold in 1899 to a clan called the Jover family. They owned the house until 2007, and Italian family bank MoraBanc purchased it seven years later, intending to open it to visitors.

Spanish architects have spent the past two years restoring Casa Vicens to its original glory: They replaced ceramic tiles on its façade with carefully wrought imitations, restored its lamps, and touched up 34 interior paintings made by Barcelona artist Francesc Torrescassana i Sallarés.

None of Gaudí’s original handiwork was altered, since the home is protected as a UNESCO World Human Heritage Site and an Asset of National Cultural Interest. However, the Jovers had expanded the home in 1925, so architects transformed these newer additions into exhibition spaces, a gift shop, and a bookstore.

You can view some pictures of Casa Vicens below, along with a video of the tile restoration process.

[h/t Hyperallergic]

Original image
YouTube
arrow
school
This Russian Kindergarten Looks Just Like a Castle
Original image
YouTube

A group of lucky kindergarteners in Russia don’t have to wear poufy dresses or plastic crowns to pretend they’re royalty. As Atlas Obscura reports, all they have to do is go to school.

In a rural area of Russia's Leninsky District sits a massive, pastel-colored schoolhouse that was built to resemble Germany's famed Neuschwanstein Castle. It has turrets and gingerbread-like moldings—and instead of a moat, the school offers its 150 students multiple playgrounds, a soccer field, a garden, and playhouses.

Tuition is 21,800 rubles (about $360) a month, but the Russian government subsidizes it to make it less expensive for parents. As for the curriculum: it’s designed to promote social optimism, and each month’s lesson plan is themed. (September, for example, will be career-focused.)

Take a video tour of the school below, or learn more on the school’s website.

[h/t Atlas Obscura]

Original image
YouTube
arrow
architecture
This Chinese Library's Interior Is Designed to Look Like an Infinite Tunnel of Books
Original image
YouTube

The Chinese city of Yangzhou is known for its graceful arched bridges and proximity to the Yangtze River and the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal. Architects kept these unique local features in mind while designing Zhongshuge Yangzhou, a new bookstore and library that was completed in 2016.

Designed by Shanghai studio XL-Muse Architects, the building has black, mirrored floors and arched ceilings that symbolize Yangzhou’s famous waterways and overpasses. The floor reflects the store’s curving shelves to create the illusion of a never-ending tunnel of books—a true bibliophile’s dream.

Learn more about Yangzhou’s unique library/bookstore below, courtesy of Great Big Story.

SECTIONS

More from mental floss studios