Data meets modernism

Sagrada Família 3D Printing
Catalonia (Barcelona)

If Antoni Gaudí were around today he would surely relish the advances 3D printing technologies are bringing to architecture, art and design. After all, the visionary’s Sagrada Família has been described as ‘space-aged’ and ‘mathematical’. Under construction since 1882, Barcelona’s number one sightseeing attraction is now better known for being one of the longest active architectural projects in the world.

3D printing is about to change that. Expensive and painstakingly handcrafted prototypes have made way for ‘rapid prototyping’ – with 3D printed plaster models allowing architects to stay true to the complexity of the original designs and speed up the whole process at a scale the human hand cannot produce.

With less waste and fewer errors, the architectural wonder of the world is set for completion in 2026, exactly 100 years after Gaudí’s death. The 3D printing of models will continue to have benefits for other buildings once the Sagrada Família is complete, using the expertise and experience gained in Barcelona. It also allows artists to complete masterpieces in their own lifetimes – freeing up time to create more beautiful structures around us.

Written by

Lisa Goldapple, Editor, Atlas of the Future (12 April 2017)

Project leader

Jordi Faulî, Chief architect, Sagrada Família Foundation and 3DSystems

Support the Atlas

We want the Atlas of the Future media platform and our event to be available to everybody, everywhere for free – always. Fancy helping us spread stories of hope and optimism to create a better tomorrow? For those able, we'd be grateful for any donation.

Creative Commons License



Take me somewhere
Take me somewhere
Data Protection Act: LOPD.
In compliance with Organic Law 15/1999, of 13 of December, on Personal Data Protection, and the development of Rules of Procedure, approved by Royal Decree 1720/2007, of 21 of December, Atlas of the Future subscribers may be required to provide Personal Data, which will be included in a file owned by Democratising The Future Society SL. Such file is duly incorporated in the Spanish Data Protection Agency and protected in compliance with the security measures established in the applicable legislation. Subscribers may exercise, at any time, their rights of access, rectification, cancellation and/or opposition regarding their Personal Data. The subscriber shall notice their will, either under written form addressed to Democratising The Future Society SL, Ref. LOPD, Calabria, 10 6-3 08015 - Barcelona (Spain) and/or by e-mail, clicking here. Also, the subscriber shall communicate Atlas of the Future any modifications of their Personal Data stored, so that the information stored by Atlas of the Future remains at all times updated and error-free.
Get World-changing projects and news in your inbox weekly.