HERRERA, Juan de
(b. 1530, Mobellán, d. 1597, Madrid)

Exterior view

Monasterio de San Lorenzo, El Escorial

The construction of the monastery and palace of San Lorenzo de El Escorial ushered in a new architectural era in Spain. The choice of a Roman style based on the Vitruvian orders represented a clear rejection of the Late Gothic and the so-called "plateresque style" that had prevailed in Spain until well into the sixteenth century.

The rational ground plan, the classically structured façade which avoided the smallest superfluous detail, the ceremonial rigor and monumental proportions of the interior, and finally the use of the characteristic gray granite from the local area were to have an impact on court architecture in Spain until the early nineteenth century; the building was still used as a model under the dictatorship of Franco.

The picture shows the façade of the central building.

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