Thursday, June 10, 2010

Look for treasures beyond appearances: Florence, The Baptistery




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This just has to be very quick. I would like to post mosaics according to location so I decided to start with Florence which is not very far from where I live and because something made me recall these specific mosaics. A spectacular place that people enchanted with the town know and recognise for its exterior and for the gilded bronze doors.

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If you are visiting Florence go to the Baptistery to see these mosaics and let them mesmerise you for a while. You will begin wondering how on earth where they made. Well. I always asked myself this question when I see Hagia Sofia mosaics, Ravenna, Monreale in Sicily, or the endless mosaic floors in Paphos in Cyprus to name a few examples. But the people back then lived indeed in "different times". No wrist watches, no mobile phones, no crazy agendas. They did this obviously as a means to survive but they were devoted to their art no matter how long it took them. There were those who were simple technicians and those who designed, or the supervisors. Today we would have to fit all these skills into one. And become somewhat lunatic, maybe restless and completely distracted. Multi-tasking? Oh. It has to become second nature otherwise you are nothing. Not a true artist. But consider that with mosaics apart from the designing process you need to know about additives, cement, cutting tools and techniques, liquids etc. This is why I think that in the past, it was better, except for one flaw: anonymity and perhaps another one: bad working conditions. But right now in my life I would not mind if someone said "come decorate a church and for the next 3 years we cover all your costs"! (especially if that church was in an idyllic place and I can think of many).

7 comments:

  1. Mosaics and Florence. That's a perfect combination. Thanks for visiting my blog!

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  2. Magnificent mosaics. You are lucky to live nearby.

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  3. Beautiful read! I have been there, and the whole thing is indeed mesmerising!

    I totally understand and share your fears that modern distractions do not help the creative process, but it seems to me that Art is inextricably woven with the time it was produced, just like the Artist is inevitably connected with the time (s)he lived in.

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  4. Mosaicista AppassionataJune 15, 2010 at 4:56 AM

    @Casa Bella, I thank you too. I am happy you have joined the blog.

    @Mindful musings, I don't live that near, I am closer to Venice which I love more than Florence but the Baptistery is such a pearl and it's right that some light is shed on this. I think I am 150km from Florence.

    @Amoronia, I have seen your profile on Etsy and I am thrilled to have you on board.

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  5. i've been to florence and seen it! i love visiting churches when i'm on holiday, and the mosaic here is wonderful.
    thank you for your comment also!

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  6. Beautiful pictures! Can't wait to go to Florence and see those amazing bronze doors in person!

    By the way your work is wonderful, so happy I found your blog :)

    OOh, last month I was studying Byzantine jewelry, and that reminded me of my visit to Venice, where I saw the amazing Pala D'Oro in the St. Marcus basilica. :) So cool you live so close to so many treasures!

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  7. Venice is my favorite because of the architecture! But Florence has the great countryside and pietre dure shops on the old bridge, like Pitti Mosaic. Nice photos on your blog.

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