We are always interested to see retro cameras depicted in various forms of public art. The statue above is titled “Unidentified Photographer” and stands in front of the old Barracks Arch in St George’s Terrace, Perth. It’s by Anne Neil and Greg James.
The sculpture below is titled “The Portrait” and stands on the site of the former Hollywood School in the City of Nedlands in Perth. It’s by Judith Forrest.
The pioneering cinema work of the Lumiere brothers, which we featured several days back, is just one of many photographic connections that we have found in our travels. Earlier this month we were at Dardanup Heritage Park south of Perth and stopped to admire this collection of vintage photographic equipment. It’s a far cry from our modern digital cameras.
Thomas Becket was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral on 29 December 1170. He was Archbishop of Canterbury and was killed by sword wielding knights of Henry II, as dramatized by TS Eliot in “Murder in the Cathedral”. The spot where Thomas was killed is marked by an altar in the cathedral (above), and the former site of his shrine is indicated by a burning candle (below).
Today is an important anniversary for fans of cinema. On 28 Dec 1895, the French brothers Auguste and Louis Lumiere screened the first public movies with an admission charge in Paris. Amazingly Lumiere (French for light) was their real family name.
Last year we visited the small seaside town of La Ciotat, near Marseille, and found plenty of reminders of the Lumiere brothers. Their family lived there for many years and you can find plenty of tributes to the cinema pioneers in the town – the monument above is on the ocean front, and the history museum has displays about the Lumieres.
Right next to Saint Stephen’s basilica in Milan, which we featured yesterday, you will find another church – San Bernadino alle Ossa. “Ossa” is Latin for bone, and this church has an amazing Ossuary Chapel in which the walls are almost completely decorated with bones. The site was originally occupied by a cemetery and the street outside the chapel was once called Dead Man’s Alley.
The ceiling of the chapel has a trompe l’oeil (trick perspective) painting which makes you feel that you are sitting in hell and looking up into a 3-D heaven.
Today is the feast day of Saint Stephen – yes the one who is mentioned in the Christmas Carol “Good King Wenceslas”. Last month we visited the Basilica of St Stephen (S. Stefano, above) in Milan. It has a stained glass window showing the martyrdom of St Stephen by stoning, as described in the Book of Acts.
When we were in Italy two months back, we visited the town of Novara in Piedmont. The impressive 16th-17th century Basilica of San Gaudenzio above, with its tall 18th century dome and spire by Antonelli, has a Nativity Chapel with the colourful altarpiece below. It sums up the nativity story quite nicely.