A biography, a novel about him, a documentary and even a sculpture at the newly opened Plaza de la Reina in Valencia. These are St. Valencian architect Rafael Guastavino (València, 1842-Asheville, North Carolina, 1908) has taken in recent years. “There has been a real boom in the last 10 years,” he says. Francis AgmuntAuthor of the last book published by the man known as “New York’s architect”.
But his book The architect who will divide the sky It’s not the result of this sudden interest in Guastavino – published by Diputació de València in the Bocins collection and presented this Thursday – with more than two decades of history. “25 years ago I began researching Guastavino’s work and life,” explains historian and scholar Francisco Agramunt. He was the first to be published in full. Upgrade-EMVAn article about Guastavino. And this would not be the last, as more would follow in many other scientific journals.
Agramunt, which he does not characterize as a biography, is rather a “educational guide” For making sure he did it to design a book that compiles everything published about Guastavino. It will serve university students to prepare their books.”
His research took him to the United States, where Guastavino signed on some of the most important projects of his career. Agramun has traveled new York (the city indebted to the Valencian architect, among others, the bowels of the imposing Central Station), Boston Y AshvilleGuastavino died at the age of 65.
During his 25 years of research, Agramunt, in addition to reading and traveling, came into contact with the “few survivors” who were the architect’s scientists and relatives. And it was easier for him to find information about his work than his private life. «He had a reputation as a womanizer and the family does not want to be emphasized, ”says the historian. “I had many difficulties, I had to consult many bibliographies about him,” he recalls. “There is little information or misrepresentation about his life,” she complains.
Eager to shed light on the life and work of Guastavino, who until relatively recently was not well known even in the USA, Agramunt was able to photograph this history for the first time. burial chamber In the Basilica of San Lorenzo de Asheville, where the architect is buried.
Agramunt emphasizes that the Guastavino figure was unknown until relatively recently. “Not even in the USA. Boston Public Library [obra de Guastavino] they give you a brochure about their build and their names are nowhere to be found. It has happened to me several times, “Agramunt is crying. “Guastavino is a boom of the last 10 years. No one knew who he was before.”
The academic justifies this sudden interest in the Valencian architect in the work of the researchers because “She was an ‘atypical’ character with a reputation for being a womanizer and having many girlfriends”. In fact, Agramunt is Guastavino’s “He earned a lot, but also spent it, made a reputation as a chestnut, a rake. It was his son who gave the order.”.
Agramunt assures that “there is still much to explore” about the ‘architect of New York’ who divided the sky with his vaults but died in his wooden cabin in a North Carolina city. According to Agramunt, guests “with a plate of good wine and a good Valencian paella”.
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