The Cathedral is Gaudí’s most famous work that simultaneously became a landmark of Barcelona and Modernisme. The architect spend most of his life working on the construction and yet it remained unfinished by the time he passed away. In 1882 F. de P. Villar y Lozano began constructing a neogothic building that Gaudí took over as his project only a year later. He began planning a magnificent church contained all his knowledge. His plans included twelve towers to represent the apostles, four representing the evangelists, one representing holy Virgin Mary and the highest tower symbolizing Jesus Christ. The only parts that Gaudí oversaw himself were the apse and the façade that depicts the birth of Christ.
Construction is being continued on the basis of Gaudí’s original drawings and models that could be saved during the destruction of the Spanish civil war (1936-39). Since 1987 sculptor Josep M. Subirachs decorates the building’s façade.
The cathedral is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.