Posted by: jeanne | February 25, 2017

a museum, a church, and pizza

today marie and jim got up at 5:30 and went down to san marco, and connor and i slept in.  connor is now sleeping on two overstuffed chairs pushed together and filled with sheets and blankets.  he doesn’t squiggle half as much when he’s penned in like that.

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when they came back, with frittelle, at 8:30 in the morning, i turned connor over to them and went back to bed.  when i got up, marie was taking a nap.  i had tea and frittelle at 11:30, and was just starting on my first cup of coffee when marie got up and we decided to beat the forecast rain and go to the accademia.  of course, it never rained…

we got as far as ca’ macana, the mask shop with the most tradition in venice, where marie spent bunches of money 17 years ago, buying up masks before you could pay for things over the internet – bank drafts and all that.  the guy didn’t really remember her, but the clerk sure did:  she’d just started working there and remembered the bank draft hoops she had to go thru.

while we were there, jim tried on a nice tricorn hat, and would have bought it if it hadn’t cost 38 euro.

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connor also tried on some masks.  this one’s for mommy:

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and this was for him; he likes blue, and thinks the mask is pinnocchio (it’s not)

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then we moved on to the accademia, where there’s a new wing open, but only kinda sorta, because half of the new wing was closed, and several of the venetian cycle paintings, by carpaccio and somebody else, weren’t available for viewing.  so i got some photos of the building itself…

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and various individual paintings.  this one is called ‘still life with winkie’

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and this one is ‘missing painting with security devices’

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the view out the window of the accademia bridge (built 1933) was also intriguing

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when marie was here last time, she just barely missed a photo of jim studying a (probably) bellini and sons painting of a guy who looked a lot like him.  so this time she got it properly, and i got her getting him.

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there’s a show on at the moment at the doge’s palace (for which we’d have to pay again), of some of the works of bosch.  this is a 1:1 photo of one of the triptychs that formerly hung in the accademia and are now nicely restored and hanging at the opulence of opulences.

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in the tintoretto galleries at the back, there are many very large paintings.  the frescoes at the ceilings were peeled off their walls and installed in these fascinating curved panels and exhibited pretty much where they would have been in the original church or palazzo.

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connor is behaving himself for a moment.

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this is one of the only paintings in the gallery that we could see featuring venice as a background.  mostly, for some reason, venetian painters stuck mountainous backgrounds in their paintings.  i have no idea why.

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this painting, tho yards long and very involved, was also in desperate need of restoration, as you can see by the patches and cracks and lines.

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jim has it in his head to do a bunch of copies of famous paintings, featuring the painter standing in front of his own painting.  so here he is, standing in front of titian’s last painting, a pieta, looking like the master himself (self-portrait).

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and here we have the painting that landed veronese in front of the inquisition, as somebody objected to the last supper featuring a drunk dwarf and some germans.  he insisted that as an artist he had the right to do whatever he wanted, but renamed the painting and all was well.

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my favorite part is this cat and dog interaction at the feet of jesus.

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along the way, connor picked up another museum guard, who was all smiled until she caught him sliding down the staircase in the next room.  after that she shadowed him until we left the floor.  still smiling.

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we got outside the accademia, and stopped at a canalside gallery that we’ve seen forever but have never stopped into.  it’s a gallery of totems, or african carvings, and i walked on in because it was free.  the gallery led to a wonderful portego with a water door at one end (featuring some paintings) and a courtyard at the other.  the floor was all eroded by salt water, and i’m afraid i didn’t have time to venture up the carpeted staircase.

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the courtyard door led to another gallery room where i found this curious sculpture, adorned with nails and locks.  pretty cool.

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then we decided to go past the peggy guggenheim to the salute, and on the way we entered a campo with a well head, and a screened off area where someone was digging.  turns out it was an archeological dig, and they found something.  not surprising, as all sorts of stuff is buried in the ground here.  see how wet the dirt is; even this far above the water line it’s all silt and mud.

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we had to stop for pizza on the way.  it was 3, and tho jim was for going home for lunch, i knew we’d only have time for frittelle and tea before dinner, so we stopped and got three slices (7.50 euro) and stood eating them in front of various art gallery windows.  the first window we stopped in front of featured the kind of painting jim hates – all gold leaf and yellow paint with very little art in it, sort of vacuous and primitive without any charm.  he he was in the middle of telling us what he hated about it when the gallery owner walked up, on the phone, and told whoever it was about the filthy tourists dripping pizza juice all over the street outside her window.  so we moved on to the next gallery, where the artist at least had a sense of humor.

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and finally ended up looking at the water in the canal, and across the canal at a gallery full of wooden sculptures of clothing.

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poor baby, we hope she gets better soon.  it’s a nasty flu season

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scene behind a gate

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a nice house next to the salute.  for some reason i’m more attracted to the 2-storey houses here

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then to the famous salute, which is a little more impressive outside than in.  it’s the one with all those curly-cues on it, and inside it’s just round, and very high, with a great floor and some good sculptures, and the most horrible lighting.  glare everywhere; i couldn’t take one decent photo of a famous painting.

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and then home for frittelle and tea, and i whipped up a quick batch of spaghetti, and then marie and i both worked on our photos, and i corresponded with the people back home for various emergency and other reasons.  we only have two more weeks here in venice, followed by a week in iceland, and things at home are only just holding together.

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later – the wind is really up right now, late into the night.  30 mph gusts just took the bag of trash off our windowsill, and knocked down the bar holding marie’s windows open, so that i had to go in and shut her shutters so they wouldn’t clatter in the night.  marie sleeps lie a log, btw.  we have acqua alta during this high tide, which is just passing.  the water is up to the level of the istrian stones, the boats are moaning against their moorings, loose shutters are banging all up and down the canal, and the noise from some late-night carnival celebration is being hurled along the canals to reach us.  marie and jim are planning on getting the early morning costumers, so they’ve been asleep, but the sound of the breaking glass in our recyclables bag got me out of bed, and i guess i’ll be up for awhile, waiting for the celebratory loudspeakers and voluble italian voices to die down.  at maybe midnight?

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