Elderly Madrid Man Builds Incredible Spanish Cathedral Entirely From Trash

This extraordinary cathedral made from salvaged materials has steadily risen over the past 50 years in a quiet Madrid neighborhood. Justo Martinez (who goes by Don Justo) has been working on the massive undertaking nearly single-handedly ever since he had to leave an order of monks due to illness. After recovering, he dedicated his life to building a church using his own money, on his own land. The massive undertaking is built almost entirely from local materials that he is able to salvage, and now topped out at 131 feet the cathedral just needs a few finishing touches — like a roof, some windows and permits.

While the cathedral’s design is loosely based on St. Peter’s Cathedral, Don Justo has created no formal drawings or engineering plans. His background in farming did not stop him from taking on such a challenging project, which incorporates motifs found in castles, churches, and even the White House. Most of the bricks are salvaged from nearby brick factories, and cathedral’s walls are certainly unorthodox.


What a badass name Don Justo!


A short movie about Don Justo Gallego

this video won the ‘special mention’ award at rutger hauers http://www.icfilms.org international filmfestival in milano 2010. thanks again for this wonderful recognition of my work.
Korte film over Don Justo Gallego, een 83 jarige ex-monnik die al 50 jaar in zijn eentje een kathedraal bouwt. Filmmaakster Maria Heidemann maakt een portret van deze man die nooit opgeeft, op integere, haast intieme wijze. Unieke beelden van Don Justo aan het werk, vol met wilskracht en op zijn zwakste momenten. Een film die het hart van de kijker raakt.
Inzending voor de Korte Film competitie van het Nederlands Online Filmfestival NOFF 2009, onderdeel van het NFF in Utrecht.
A short movie about Don Justo Gallego, an 85 year old former monk in Spain. 50 years ago he started to build a cathedral on his own after he almost died. Not bothered by heat, cold, rain, wind, Don Justo works 6 days a week, 12 hours a day to follow his devotion.
Filmmaker Maria Heidemann shows a portrait of this man who never gives up in an integer, almost intimate way. Unique pictures of Don Justo at work: full of determination and in his weakest moments. A film that touches the heart of the spectator.
Don Justo Gallego NOFF online version 2009, as part of NFF Utrecht.
With all my respects to Don Justo….

This entry was posted in Art/ Photography, Life/ Health/ News and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s