5/21/10

A Little Slice of Tuscany

You know how Tony Bennett left his heart in San Francisco? I almost left my shoe at the Teremini train station! Seriously. As we were boarding the train in Rome, my shoe fell down and under the train. Luckily, one of the Italian guys working there helped me get it, but it was the beginning omen for a very LONG day!

Once we arrived in Florence, we got off the train and made our way to a bus that took us to the hotel. Luckily we were given about an hour because I needed a shower and a few moments to get myself together before we were given a couple sheets of instruction and were split up for a pseudo scavenger hunt!

Each set of instructions either went clockwise or counter clockwise around the city, and made us hit different major piazzas or areas of town so we'd have some sense of where we're going. Mostly, we think Steve just needed a break from us. For a while there we figured he was hoping we'd get lost at some point and that perhaps he'd come looking for us in a week or so, once he'd had a good break! But the instructions took us safely back to the hotel, excited and ready to see more of Florence in the coming weeks.

The next day we also got to have a fun view of the city as we started hitting the major points!




First we took a bus to the top of the hill. Coolest view of Florence!!! That big dome is Brunelleschi's dome and is part of the Florence Cathedral. (I did my report on the dome and loved doing the reading on it!) One interesting thing is that there have long since been building laws that restrict building above a certain height, allowing the Cathedral to still be seen above all other buildings to this day. LOVE IT!!!


There are many pieces of art that happen to be copies in the place where the originals were. This is to preserve the originals and keep them from becoming damaged. While we got to see the "Gates of Paradise" (Gilded bronze doors on the east side of the baptistry) via a copy, the only original on display was the story of Joshua's battle against Jericho. Really wonderful. The others are in for cleaning unfortunately for us.


This is Michelangelo's second Pieta, which was intended for his own tomb. (Could you imagine building your own tomb? Creepy!) It never was finished. The angel pictured on the right would have been added much later and the technique and style makes it obvious someone else did that portion.


One of the girls in our group pointed to this one in the room of statues that used to adorn the Cathedral and said "that one looks like Voldemort." It's informally known as "Pumpkin-head" actually, because the detail was lost from a distance and his head is so strange. This is one by Donatello.




And last, but not least... how would you like to wake up to that lovely face each morning! This is Mary Magdelene, again by Donatello. Really fascinating work of art! Love how they light it up in the Duomo museum!

1 comment:

  1. Ewwww. Mary Magdalene has man-arms and man-hands!

    ReplyDelete