Thursday, September 11, 2014

PADUA, FLORENCE

Padua - an interesting combination of architectural styles all beautifully blended.
 
On from Venice, to the pretty town of Padova (Padua)...
 
 That night I finally saw my dream destination: the beautiful Scrovegni (Arena) Chapel with its 38 frescos by Giotto.
It was as glorious as I had imagined, covering the walls in a pageant of the lives of Christ and his mother Mary.
It is Giotto's distinctive, human, style which appeals to me so much.
Yes, we have already seen more churches and chapels than I can count,
but this one, for me, is Queen of them all.
 
Of course, no photography was permitted, to preserve these delicate and ageing paintings, completed in 1305, but here is a Google look:
 
 
 
 
Of course, we visited the Basilica of St Anthony, patron saint of lost items...
frankly, we need his help these days, losing (and finding) essential travel items at an alarming and daily rate..
 
 
We left Padua in a flurry of cardinal feathers, standing at the wrong end of the platform when the train roared in for a two minute pause...
hurray for wheeled bags, as we each have one small and one medium, and ran them to the other end of the train...the whistle blew before we reached our door, and a lovely woman helped load us, the final two passengers, onto the train.   Phew!
 
 
and so to Firenze (Florence), and we are having the most marvellous time:
 
 
Armed with our Florence Passes, we have been to all the major museums, and walked in the steps of the Medici...
 
Michelangelo: Tomb of Lorenzo 1531-32

 admired many of Michelangelo's best works..


Michelangelo; Bacchus, 1497
 
Always wanted to see his famous staircase, so graceful, at the entrance to his superb architectural triumph, the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana...
and adored the library, with hand-written captions indicating the subject in each section at he end of wooden stalls which formerly held the manuscripts:
 
 
I am very fond of Donatello, too:
 
 
 
 
 
Sorry, his David is very dark, it being quite early in the morning - and no flash permitted, of course.
 
 
Did I tell you how much I enjoyed doing Renaissance art history at University?
I was beside myself with excitement to see these two panels:
'Sacrifice of Isaac', one each by Lorenzo Ghiberti and Filippo Brunelleschi in 1401, a competition to judge the best artist to design the bronze doors to the beautiful Baptistry at the Duomo.
The competition began one of the greatest artistic rivalries of all time.
The judges could not decide between these two, and declared a tie suggesting they both work on the doors as partners.
Brunelleschi was so offended he withdrew and Ghiberti completed the series of panels for the doors.
However, Brunelleschi pursued his career in architecture, and is the genius who designed that incredible feat of engineering the dome of the Duomo of Florence.
 
 
If you have read this far: Congratulations...
but this place is not just about the art.
My mission was to purchase a leather jacket, possibly black or a dark neutral.
But no, I have purchased a red leather jacket from a tiny shop near the Arno..
Well, we all know I love bright colours, but how did that (male) sales assistant work this out?
 
 
Our hotel is located within a 500 year old Palazzo, above a Prada store.
How cool is that?
I love the fashions in the shops, and the big labels are all about us, providing inspiration for some of my own 'interpretations' when we return to our nest in Australia.
 
I am eating icecream nearly every day, counter balanced by tuna insalata...
 
 
 
Next stop: Rome
 
Have a great weekend
 
XXXX
 
 


25 comments:

  1. Proud of Padova, my city, and Florence.. well, what to say about this wonder ? thanks for sharing Patricia !
    I hope you enjoyed Padova !

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    1. Hi Massimo, yes we did enjoy Padova, a very attractive city, the right size to move around. It was fun to sit in the square on Sunday, watching the crowd and eating delicious icecream.

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  2. Wow, wow and wow. So much beauty everywhere. Patricia, you are loaded with memories ; ). Luckily you got the leather jacket in red, it just had to be red!
    Are your feet killing you?
    And next - Rome.

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    1. Thank you Mette and of course, the red bird must have a red jacket. Now in Rome it is 34 deg!! Too hot to wear it now ...

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    2. And no, my feet are fine, but Mr C is having blisters - I feel so sad for him.

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  3. Loving following your travels Trish....beautiful. Wow your jacket is gorgeous and yes!!! Very you! Xx

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    1. Glad you enjoy it, Michelle. Let's hope next winter is cold in Brisbane so the red bird can fly about in that jacket every day.. xx

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  4. Your jacket is so nice! I'm sure it will look great on you. Thanks for sharing the photos of Padua, especially the art you saw. I love Renaissance art too, those frescoes are so beautiful.

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    1. I am glad you like it Jennifer. The Renaissance was an amazing time, so many artists of great genius working to make these beautiful churches and cities.

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  5. This trip is wonderful. I have never been to Padua, but love what you have shown us..the chapel is glorious. Florence is just a real jewel isn't it ? Its a long time since i visited, but i once took a group of 17 and 18 year old students there.... they adored it too. I think Donatello's David is so beautiful too. Mark bought a leather jacket when we were in Florence last.... must be at least 15 years ago...its still going strong ! I love yours.
    I'm sure you're going to have a great time in Rome too.... x

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    1. Giotto chapel was worth the side trip to Padua, and yes, loved Florence very much too. Who can resist a leather something in Florence? Wish I'd got a bag too, he he.

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  6. Bunking down above Prada? I'm impressed. Love your cardinal red jacket and I am looking forward to your report on Rome.

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    1. The old Palazzo was lots of fun Val, all different levels, steps and stairs, and an ancient lift too. It is called Hotel Scoti, and very reasonable. Rome is very hot, but we are working on getting ourselves out and about.

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  7. Wonderful to travel along with you through your photos. The red jacket is perfect for you. Somehow that sales person tuned in to your love of color.

    Darla

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    1. One of the nicer sales persons we have encountered Darla. There are, sadly, a lot of people who happily cheat tourists, but that is life. I will enjoy the red jacket for many years!

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  8. I am so enjoying following you around on your travels, Patricia! You are going to have so many wonderful memories to cherish when you get back home.

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    1. Glad you enjoy it Kristie, and the memories are stacking up nicely along with the photos. It is hard to sleep at night, with brain working through the contents of each day :)

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  9. Again, gorgeous photos! I haven't been to Padua, but would love to go. Firenze or Florence is a feast for the art lover isn't it? Not sure I liked it as a city though, I preferred Pisa and Lucca (smaller, more intimate). I've never been to Rome either, so will follow you there!

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    1. Hi Val and thank you for all the nice comments. I think you might like Padua, small and elegant with smart shops inside lots of very old and interesting buildings. There was not time to go to Pisa, but maybe next time. We managed Florence, not too big, but Rome is so vast it will be a challenge to do it any justice.

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  10. Florence is one of my favourite little cities - it was nice to see all you photos as it brought back great memories (how selfish of me!). Seriously, I am so pleased you finally managed to see the Scrovegni Chapel.

    And of course, where else but Florence for leathergoods?

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  11. Thank you for all those photo so I can at least visit Italy in spirit. Some of my favorite art - I see one can no longer climb the steps, but were the actual doors still on display somewhere? I feel so happy that you are getting to see this all over again.

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  12. I am truly enjoying your vacation, Patricia! It's been years since I've travelled to London, Paris, or Italy. I'd love to return trust you and Mr. C are having a fabulous time!

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  13. You really are making the very best of every moment of your time in Italy, Patricia, whether you're enjoying art or architecture, fashion or ice-cream. :-) Wonderful! I too love Giotto and his style is unmistakable. I haven't seen the Padua frescoes but adore the ones in the basilica of San Francesco in Assisi.

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  14. Hi Patricia, sorry I haven't been able to read and comment on last few posts but I'll catch up. This one is just exquisite - the art and the buildings that house it. What a wonderful experience to get to see all this. Ah, I know that ice cream is wonderful (gelato?) Hoe you get to wear that beautiful red jacket soon!

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  15. Oh Florence 'the cradle of the Rennaisance'!
    I did art history at school and couldn't wait to get there to see all the art and architecture.
    Florence is so beautiful and it's wonderful to see it through your eyes Patricia.

    i love your red jacket - a perfect colour on a dreary winter's day - though you don't get so many of those in Brisbane!

    Take care and God Bless
    Shane x

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