Free Utilitarian Art: Art for the Masses Essay Sample

Utilitarian art emerges within the public sphere. It also generates discussion around such aspects as happiness and human identity. Utilitarian works may memorialize the community’s past, function as one’s memory, or signify the current trend. Public works reflect the interpretation of the community’s identity, and they are distinctive due to the public involvement into the discussion around the choice of art. The artist needs to comprehend the cultural context, in which he/she works. The storytelling element and happiness underlying every utilitarian artwork are of particular importance. While creating their works, utilitarian designers try to make them vandal resistant. The current paper seeks to explore the Park Guell as an outstanding public art piece sponsored by the wealthy Catalan entrepreneur Eusebi Guell and created by the legendary architect Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona, Spain.

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Locals and tourists are encouraged to visit the Park Guell that incorporates the best examples of architectural creativity produced by the incredible architect Antoni Gaudi. While creating the sight in the early twentieth century, the legendary modernist practitioner took every small detail into consideration. Today, the Park Guell is one of the most beautiful places in Spain serving as a striking example of how a poor and unpromising commercial project can become a great place of rest for locals and tourists throughout the world. Examination of sightseeing full of natural and human genius may take at least half a day. The history of the famous landmark, the Park Guell is rich and outstanding. At the beginning of the 20th century, after visiting England’s sights, the wealthy Catalonian industrialist, Eusebi Guell came up with the unusual idea. The influential tycoon noticed Gaudi at the exhibition of arts and invited him to participate in the promising project. He commissioned the architect to create a garden city on the Bald Mountain near Barcelona that would be similar in the style and popularity with the English ecological housing. The Park Guell was built at the time when the architect was not known. Construction lasted 14 years. It was planned to sell the unusual house, but the locals were not interested in purchasing it. In the course of time, this magnificent work of art was sold to the municipality.

Guell hoped that it would be possible to sell most of the territory, but he could only sell two houses, in one of which he has been living for many years. Today, it is served as a house-museum. The garden city gained success and recognition due to the remoteness of the center. The historical events occurred in 1902, namely the nationwide strike leading to the political instability and tension between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, preceded the construction of the new masterpiece. Therefore, wealthy people feared that the local workers can attack the new garden during the revolutionary events. The creation of the artwork failed from the financial perspective since potential buyers did not support Guell’s entering the village. Since he was a mason, locals were not ready to surround themselves with the masonic lodge. Therefore, criticism and discontent sharply reduced the number of potential buyers. The project of a garden city was not paid off, and after Guell’s death, his heirs sold this part of the city. Millions of people visit the most popular park in Barcelona annually.

The picturesque panoramic view of Barcelona with the opened specific sight and the surroundings of the magnificent Park Guell are impregnated with the ideas of the eccentric architect, who opposed the strict right angles and straight lines. Antoni Gaudi highlighted maximum diversity in all his works. In addition to the park, the palaces, houses and churches designed by the legendary master, revived his spirit. The visitors and art enthusiasts can easily recognize Gaudi’s works due to the artist’s weakness to the alluring curves. In fact, the architect did not adhere to any particular school. Gingerbread houses of intricate shape and colorful ceramic facades of the Park Guell catch the public eye. Amazing animal sculptures are located in the stairwell. The most popular part is the dragon, with which the tourists are so fond of being photographed. Stairs bring visitors to the Hall of hundred columns, a fabulous room with dizzying arches of wavy shape. Because of the abundance of twists, one may feel that everything moves, bends, and columns swim. There is a wide area on the roof of the hall establishing a fairly long wavy bench decorated with fragments of pottery. It is often argued that the architect and his assistants gathered the material for the cladding of this creation very carefully. They used the pieces of bottles and cracked tiles. A narrow path nearby is decorated with a gallery with columns very similar to natural wood.

The Park Guell made of steel, stone, and glass is full of fantastic images, non-standard shapes, colorful paint, and unusual proportions that make the architectural masterpiece vivid. Every element of the artwork is worth public attention and recognition. Antoni Gaudi was not afraid to express his views, thoughts and, therefore, his outstanding creation has echoed the future culture. Art enthusiasts deservedly describe his masterpiece as a soothing oasis in a desert surrounded by numerous functional buildings.  It is also considered a gem lost among the row of gray houses. An amazing, colored bench located around the square provides a great space for various activities in the Park Guell. One may see young people and elderly chatting on the large square surrounded by trees. The inclusive, surrealist architectural masterpiece provides a fertile playground for the human imagination. Due to his Catalan origin, Antoni Gaudi completely understood the specifics of Barcelona’s culture. He also recognized the need to create a happy, playful place for the local community and foreigners. The public function of the sight is to make dreams come true and plunge into the world of fantasy. Although the local public was not invited to discuss its construction, today, it is served as a recreational center for Barcelona’s residents and tourists.

Disputes over utilitarian art unmask deep concerns that the members of modern society have concerning their voice in the public sphere. Social challenges, hostility between various political parties, and the failure of institutions overwhelm and frustrate individuals. The nature of controversies on utilitarian art suggests that the majority of architects, artists, and designers choose to express their dissatisfaction with the social problems by using public culture. As a solid target, it produces discussion concerning the community’s cultural identity.  Public art has evolved in the same direction as the public space. Individuals are engaged in the direct dialogue, deepen their understanding of the surrounding world and the art functions.

The large Park Guell surrounded by many buildings is located in the heart of Barcelona, Spain. Its name comes from the wealthy Catalan entrepreneur, who invited the legendary architect Antoni Gaudi to work on his new, promising project. The master’s large financial capacity helped him to implement many of his projects, including the Park Guell as an iconic work of utilitarian art. The construction of the outstanding masterpiece created by the eminent modernist practitioner Antoni Gaudi lasted for 14 years. A wide variety of amazing architectural elements and gardens underlie the entire public park system.


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