Thursday, October 31, 2013

Grotta del Buontalenti

Grotta del Buontalenti, Buontalenti Grotto, Giardini di Boboli, Boboli Gardens, Florence
Grotta del Buontalenti (Buontalenti Grotto)
Giardini di Boboli (Boboli Gardens)
Florence, October 2013

“On both sides of the pillared entrance to the Buontalenti Grotto there are two niches with sculptures representing Ceres and Apollo. Both crafted by Baccio Bandinelli, the pieces were originally part of Vasari's nursery. Gorgeous though they are, the two sculptures are hardly the most impressive or eye-catching piece of the structure. The facade is completely overlaid with concretions similar to stalagmites. The tympanum is displayed in the center and the Medici coat of arms is supported by two mosaic feminine figures symbolizing Peace and Justice. The background of the facade, on which all of this sits, is decorated by mosaic frames containing sea goats and other mythical designs.”
(Buontalenti Grotto, Atlas Obscura)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Water Ambulance

Water ambulance, Grand Canal, Venice
Water ambulance speeding along the Grand Canal
Venice, September 2013

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Indian Hunter

Indian Hunter by
The Indian Hunter by John Quincy Adams Ward, 1866
East of Sheep Meadow, Central Park
New York, September 2007

“The Indian Hunter derives from Ward’s artistic exploration of that theme beginning in the late 1850s; he displayed a smaller version of the subject at the Washington Art Association in 1859, and three years later, he exhibited a statuette of the Indian Hunter at the National Academy of Design. After the Civil War, Ward set about enlarging his conception to a full-size sculpture. In an effort to include naturalistic details, he traveled to the Dakotas, making sketches and three-dimensional models based on his direct observations of Native Americans.”
(Indian Hunter, Central Park Conservancy)

Monday, October 28, 2013

Jägerbataillon 291

Jägerbataillon 291, Franco-German Brigade, boulevard de la Madeleine, Paris
Jägerbataillon 291 (291st Light Infantry Battalion), Franco-German Brigade
After the Bastille Day military parade
Boulevard de la Madeleine
Paris, July 2012

Search labels: 14 juillet

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Ponte Sisto

Ponte Sisto, Sisto Bridge by the architect Baccio Pontelli, Rome
Ponte Sisto (Sisto Bridge) across the Tiber
By the architect Baccio Pontelli, 1479
Rome, April 2013

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Archangel Gabriel

Archangel Gabriel, St Mark's Campanile, St Mark's Square, Venice
Archangel Gabriel (copy of the original by Luigi Zandomeneghi, 1822)
Campanile di San Marco (St Mark's Campanile)
Piazza San Marco (St Mark's Square)
Venice, September 2013

“In the following centuries numerous other interventions were made to repair the damage caused by fires. In 1653, Baldassarre Longhena took up the restorations. More work was done after a fire on April 13, 1745, which caused some of the masonry to crack, and killed several people as a result of falling stonework. Finally, in 1776, the campanile was equipped with a lightning rod. In 1820, the statue of the angel was replaced with a new one by Luigi Zandomeneghi.”
(St Mark's Campanile, Wikipedia)

Friday, October 25, 2013

Stretch Limousine

Lincoln Stretch Limousine, Pariser Platz, Berlin
Lincoln Stretch Limousine
Pariser Platz
Berlin, September 2011

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Le Messager

Le Messager, The Messenger by Ossip Zadkine, Quai d'Orsay, Paris
“Le Messager” (The Messenger) by Ossip Zadkine, 1937
Quai d'Orsay, 7e arrondissement
Paris, July 2012

“Slip into the narrow alley at 100 bis rue d’Assas and you’ll enter a small courtyard where abstract bronze figures mingle with trees and shrubbery. This is the entrance to the Musée Zadkine,—the former home of Ossip Zadkine, a Russian sculptor and one of Miller’s earliest friends in Paris. Readers of Tropic of Cancer may best know Zadkine as Borowski, the rather stuffy artist with ‘a different cane for each day in the week, and one for Easter.’”
(Musée Zadkine, Walking Paris with Henry Miller)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Rio de la Plata

The Rio de la Plata, Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, Fountain of the Four Rivers by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, piazza Navona, Rome
The Rio de la Plata, Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (Fountain of the Four Rivers)
By Gian Lorenzo Bernini,1651, Piazza Navona
Rome, April 2013

See also: The Ganges - The Nile

“The Rio de la Plata, representing America, is identified by the coins beneath it, which refer to the riches brought from the colonies. It is accompanied by a somewhat oddly-rendered armadillo, described by Domenico as ‘an animal of the Indies’ and probably only known to Gianlorenzo through drawings (fig. 18). The figure of the Rio de la Plata deviates from the classical appearance of the other figures with regard to its physiognomy, which identifies the figure as being from West Africa rather than from America.”
(The Rio de la Plata, The 2013 Bernini Online Exhibit)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bronze Well-head

Bronze well-head by Nicolò Dei Conti, Courtyard of the Doge's Palace, Venice
Bronze “vera da pozzo” (Well-head) by Nicolò Dei Conti, 1556
(In background another well-head by Alfonso Alberghetti, 1559)
Courtyard of the Doge's Palace
Venice, September 2013

‘Still, in 1814 there were 5000 well-heads in Venice; in 1856 only 2000. Now only 17 of the earliest or Italo-Byzantine period remain, and nearly half of these are in the hands of antiquity dealers. Venice is always wishing to sell its birthright of art-treasures.’ When describing the Doge’s Palace he does not fail to mention the two bronze well-heads: ‘in the court are two magnificent well-heads (puteali) of bronze, one by Niccolò de’ Conti, Director of the Foundries of the Republic (1556), the other by Alfonso Alberghetti (1559)’.
(Venetian well-heads in nineteenth-century taste, Anna Tüskés quoting Venice by Augustus Hare, 1885)

See also: Vera da pozzo

Monday, October 21, 2013

Alison Lapper Pregnant

Alison Lapper Pregnant by Marc Quinn, Fourth plinth, Trafalgar Square, London,
“Alison Lapper Pregnant” by Marc Quinn, 2005
Fourth plinth, Trafalgar Square
London, September 2005

External links: Alison Lapper (Wikipedia)

“The statue, 11 feet 7 inches of snow-white Carrara marble, shows the naked, eight-and-a-half-month-pregnant figure of 40-year-old Alison Lapper, a single mother who was born with shortened legs and no arms. Ms. Lapper is a friend of the sculptor, Marc Quinn, who has said that Nelson's Column, the focal point of Trafalgar Square, is ‘the epitome of a phallic male moment’ and that he thought ‘the square needed some femininity.’”

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Fontaine de l'Avril

Statue of the Fontaine de l'Avril (April Fountain) by Pierre Roche, Musée Galliéra, Square Brignole Galliera, Paris
Statue of the Fontaine de l'Avril (April Fountain) by Pierre Roche, 1916
Square Brignole Galliera, 16e arrondissement
Paris, July 2012

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Lungotevere in Sassia

Bus stops, Lungotevere in Sassia, Rome
Bus stops, Lungotevere in Sassia
Rome, April 2013

Friday, October 18, 2013

Faro di Murano

Faro di Murano, Murano Lighthouse, Murano island, Venetian Lagoon, Venice
Faro di Murano (Murano Lighthouse), 1934
Murano, Venetian Lagoon
Venice, October 2013

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Edwin Booth

Edwin Booth as Hamlet by Edmond Thomas Quinn, Gramercy Park, New York
Edwin Booth as Hamlet, by Edmond Thomas Quinn, 1916
Gramercy Park
New York, September 2007

“Edwin Booth came from a family of actors. His father was also a Shakespearean actor, as were his two brothers, John Wilkes Booth and Junius Booth, Jr. Edwin appeared with his brothers in several performances, but neither of his brothers achieved the level of success in acting that Edwin did. His brother, John Wilkes Booth, did achieve notoriety that surpassed Edwin's. While Edwin himself was a supporter of President Abraham Lincoln, his brother John was an extreme secessionist. This drove a wedge between the brothers, and Edwin was as shocked and outraged as the rest of the country when his brother, John Wilkes, shot President Lincoln on April 14th, 1865.”
(Edwin Booth, HistoryNet)

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Vasil Levski

Васил Левски, Vasil Levski, Embassy of Bulgaria, place de la Résistance, Paris
Vasil Levski (Васил Левски), Embassy of Bulgaria
Place de la Résistance, 7e arrondissement
Paris, July 2012

“The bronze bas-relief of the head of Levski, part of the monument, was created by Josef Strachovský (or, according to other sources, Austrian sculptor Rudolf Weyr), whereas Italian Abramo Peruchelli did the stonecutting work. It was inaugurated on 22 October 1895, but was planned and worked on ever since the Liberation of Bulgaria in 1878, the construction being hindered by a chronic lack of funds and negligence, and taking a whole 17 years. This ignited a wave of indignation among the Bulgarian intellectuals of the time, with the poet Konstantin Velichkov even branding this carelessness in a 1881 poem (see text).”

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Goffredo Mameli

Funerary monument to Goffredo Mameli by Luciano Campisi, Verano Monumental Cemetery, Roma
Funerary monument to Goffredo Mameli by Luciano Campisi, 1891
Verano Monumental Cemetery, Piazzale del Verano
Rome, April 2013

E lira e spada staranno
giusto simbolo della sua vita
sulla pietra che un dì gli ergeremo
in Roma
nel camposanto
dei Martiri della Nazione
(Both lyre and sword will remain,
as the fair symbol of his life,
on the stone we will raise in his honor one day
in Rome
in the cemetery
of the Nation's Martyrs)
— Giuseppe Mazzini

“Of his many ardent patriotic poems set to music, his fame, among many competing versifiers of 1848-49, rested upon ‘Fratelli d'Italia’ written during demonstrations in Genoa in early September 1847 and set to music by a Genoese living in Turin, Michele Novaro. It was sung throughout the revolutions, popularized by succeeding generations of Garibaldini but did not receive the status as Italy's national anthem until 1946.”
(Goffredo Mameli, Encyclopedia of Revolutions of 1848)

Monday, October 14, 2013

Inside San Stae

Interior of the church of San Stae, Grand Canal, Venice
Interior of the church of San Stae (Saint Eustachius)
Campo di San Stae, Santa Croce
Venice, September 2013

“Giovanni Grassi's late-17th-century interior reveals the clear influence of Palladio. In the church you can admire important works by Nicolò Bambini, Giuseppe Camerata and Antonio Balestra. These works include such absolute masterpieces as The Martyrdom of St. Bartholomew by the young Giambattista Tiepolo, The Martyrdom of St. James by Giambattista Piazzetta and The Liberation of St. Peter by Sebastiano Ricci. In the Sacristy there are also some interesting works such as Pietro Vecchia's Dead Christ and Giambattista Pittoni's Trajan ordering St. Eustache to adore Pagan Idols.”
(San Stae Church, Venice Connected)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Reichstag Dome

Inside the Reichstag dome, Reichstag building, Berlin
Inside the Reichstag dome
Reichstag building
Berlin, September 2011

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Les grandes serres

Les grandes serres, the large greenhouses, Jardin des Plantes, Paris
Les grandes serres (The large greenhouses)
Jardin des Plantes, 5e arrondissement
Paris, July 2012

Friday, October 11, 2013

Santa Maria dei Sette Dolori

Chiesa di Santa Maria dei Sette Dolori, church of Our Lady of the Seven Sorrows, via Garibaldi, Trastevere, Rome
Church of Santa Maria dei Sette Dolori (Our Lady of the Seven Sorrows)
Via Garibaldi, Trastevere
Rome, April 2013

“Francesco Borromini designed the unusual façade of the nunnery; he clearly had in mind a curved wall of Villa Adriana which projects from a flat one; also in the use of small flat bricks for decorative purposes the architect showed his knowledge of the ancient Roman construction techniques. ”

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Dante's Barge

Ладья Данте, Dante’s Barge by Georgy Frangulyan, Canale delle Fondamenta Nuove, Venice
«Ладья Данте» (Dante’s Barge) by Georgy Frangulyan, 2007
Canale delle Fondamenta Nuove
Venice, September 2013

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Benjamin Disraeli

Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield by Mario Raggi, Parliament Square, London
Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield by Mario Raggi, 1883
Parliament Square
London, October 2009

“Benjamin was the eldest son of Isaac D'Israeli (1766-1848), a writer, who was descended from a Jewish family who had settled in Italy, and his wife Maria Bacevi. He wrote his first story when he was fifteen years old and published many novels during his lifetime, but they were critically dismissed by writers such as Wordsworth and Anthony Trollope. He travelled widely and in the 1830s began his political career. In 1839 he married widow Mary Anne Lewis. He rose to be leader of the House of Commons and chancellor of the exchequer. In 1868 and 1874-6 he was Prime Minister and he was created Earl of Beaconsfield in 1876.”
(Benjamin Disraeli, The Dean and Chapter of Westminster )

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Saint-Louis-des-Invalides, rue de Grenelle, Paris
Saint-Louis-des-Invalides, Hôtel des Invalides
Rue de Grenelle, 7e arrondissement
Paris, July 2012

Monday, October 7, 2013

The Nile

The Nile, Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, Fountain of the Four Rivers by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, piazza Navona, Rome
The Nile, Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (Fountain of the Four Rivers)
By Gian Lorenzo Bernini,1651, Piazza Navona
Rome, April 2013

See also: The Ganges

“The shrouding of the Nile’s face also serves to signify that it, like the Ganges, is completely unaware of the obelisk behind it, therefore marking Africa as another of the ignorant parts of the world unable to see the divine light that is so obvious to Bernini’s Catholic audience.”
(The Nile, The 2013 Bernini Online Exhibit)

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Dogana da Mar

Bronze atlantes bearing a gilded sphere surmounted by the goddess Fortune holding a wind vane, sculpture by Giuseppe Benoni atop the Dogana building, Punta della Dogana, Venice
Bronze atlantes bearing a gilded sphere surmounted by the goddess Fortune holding a wind vane
Sculpture by Giuseppe Benoni atop the Dogana building, Punta della Dogana
Venice, September 2013

“The museum's art is housed in and around the Dogana da Mar building. It was built between 1678 and 1682 as a customs house. The arcade styles reflect their construction in different eras. Atop the building are statues of Atlas, built to represent the supremacy of the Republic of Venice. The two slaves hold a golden ball upon which Giuseppe Benoni's Fortune stands. The 17th-century statue turns in the wind. The last renovation of the building was done by Alvise Pigazzi in 1838.”
(Dogana da Mar, Wikipedia)

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Read God's Word

Read God's Word The Holy Bible Daily, Jehovah's Witnesses international headquarters, Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, New York
“Read God's Word The Holy Bible Daily”
Jehovah's Witnesses international headquarters
Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn
New York, September 2008

Friday, October 4, 2013

L'éducation maternelle

L'éducation maternelle, The Maternal Education by Eugène Delaplanche, square Samuel-Rousseau, Paris
L'éducation maternelle (The Maternal Education) by Eugène Delaplanche, 1875
Square Samuel-Rousseau, 7e arrondissement
Paris, July 2012

Thursday, October 3, 2013

John Whitehead Peard

Bust of Colonel John Whitehead Peard, Garibaldi's Englishman, Janiculum Hill, Rome
Bust of Colonel John Whitehead Peard (1811-1880)
Known as Garibaldi's Englishman, Janiculum Hill
Rome, April 2013

“Known as ‘Garibaldi’s Englishman,’ Peard was an Oxford-educated lawyer and the son of a British admiral. He joined Garibaldi in 1860, ostensibly because of the brutality of the officials he witnessed during a visit to Naples. Peard fought in the wars of Italian unification and was awarded the Cross of the Order of Valour by King Victor Emmanuel II. Following Garibaldi’s retirement, Peard returned to Cornwall and lived the quiet life of a Victorian gentleman.”
(Colonel John Whitehead Peard, World Digital Library)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

San Nicolò dei Mendicoli

Chiesa di San Nicolò dei Mendicoli, Saint Nicholas of the Beggars church, Campo San Nicolò, Dorsoduro, Venice
San Nicolò dei Mendicoli (Saint Nicholas of the Beggars)
Campo San Nicolò, Dorsoduro
Venice, September 2013

“Other churches in town may be grander and glitzier, but San Nicolò dei Mendicoli earns a special spot in local hearts for being the most essentially Venetian. From the outside, this low, spare brick Veneto-Gothic church dedicated to serving the poor hasn’t changed much since the 12th century, when its cloisters functioned as a women’s shelter and its portico sheltered mendicoli (beggars). The tiny, picturesque campo out front is a Venice in miniature, surrounded on three sides by canals and bearing a pylon bearing the winged lion of St Mark, one of the few in Venice to have escaped target practice by Napoleon’s troops.”

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Scala dei Giganti

Scala dei Giganti, Giants’ Staircase by Antonio Rizzo, statues of Mars and Neptune by Jacopo Sansovino, Courtyard of the Doge's Palace, Venice
Scala dei Giganti (Giants’ Staircase) by Antonio Rizzo, 1491
With statues of Mars and Neptune by Jacopo Sansovino, 1567
Courtyard of the Doge's Palace
Venice, September 2013

“Used for formal entrances, the Giants’ Staircase is guarded by Sansovino’s two colossal statues of Mars and Neptune, which represents Venice’s power by land and by sea. The rounded arch dedicated to Doge Francesco Foscari (1423-1457) alternates bands of Istrian stone and red Verona marble and links the Giants’ Staircase to the Porta della Carta through which visitors today leave the palace. Members of the Senate gathered before government meetings in the Senator’s Courtyard, to the right of the Giants’ Staircase.”
(Palazzo Ducale, Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia)