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Gaudi

Decoration

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First Mystery of the Glory of the Monumental Rosary at Montserrat
(1907)
Camí de la Santa Cova. Montserrat (Bages)

In 1893 Jaume Collell i Bancells, Canon of Vic, proposed the erection of a “rosary” of monuments between the Monastery and the Holy Cave of Montserrat paid for by private individuals and Catholic brotherhoods. The project, launched in 1896 and completed twenty years later, entailed the construction of fifteen sculptural groups representing the fifteen mysteries of the Virgin.

In late 1900 Antoni Gaudí received a commission to direct the First Mystery of Glory, an allusion to the Resurrection of Jesus, paid for by the Spiritual League of Our Lady of Montserrat founded by Josep Torras i Bages, Bishop of Vic and personal friend of the architect. Gaudí created a sculpture that was in harmony with its environment, in a cave excavated into the rock where an angel and the three Maries watch over the sarcophagus of Jesus while the resurrected Christ appears on the wall above.

Due to problems with funding the works of the mystery did not start until spring 1907 and Gaudí left the project a few months later when it was again halted by economic difficulties. By then only the cave had been excavated and the sculpture of Christ by Josep Llimona i Bruguera mounted on the wall. The project was completed between 1913 and 1916 by another architect, Jeroni Martorell i Terrats, and the missing figures were created by sculptor Dionís Renart i Garcia. 

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