March 31, 2010

AMBEX Impressions: Art History Tour by Kammie Anten

Basilica San Marcos in Venice

Venice. The city is so cool. It has a ton of history. The entire thing was built on a bunch of logs that were jammed into the sediment around the 12th century...because of the lack of oxygen down there, the logs never rotted and the city has been sitting there ever since! Every street you turn down, you're in another narrow alley, surrounded by old brick buildings, and occasionally crossing one of the many canals that run through the city. I couldn't help think of movies like "The Italian Job" every time we saw a boat putting down a canal. Our first stop was going to be San Marcos Plaza to see the Cathedral San Marcos and a Doge Museum. In order to get there, we crossed the grand canal...where the canal is the biggest and the one that I'm used to seeing in all the pictures of Venice. The Cathedral San Marcos was built on what looks like a giant dock that is San Marcos Plaza. The Cathedral doesn't look much at all like the ones we've been seeing in Germany and Austria. Prof. Horner, our Art History teacher, explained to us that when you go further south especially in Italy, you will find Eastern influences in both architecture and religion. Some of the building windows looked like something you'd see in "Aladdin" and the supposedly Catholic Cathedral looked more like an Eastern Orthodox church.

Gold Mosaics inside the Basilica
After we finished learning about the cathedral, we went back out to the plaza and couldn't ignore the masses of pigeons that were entertaining all the visitors. Andrew and Tanner actually managed to catch one of the greedy pigeons in Tanner's bag. Once it was in the bag we couldn't just let it go, so they thought of a creative way to make use of a pigeon in a bag. They waited until Courtney came around and handed her the bag. She didn't exactly scream like we were hoping, but she was surprised for sure. The pigeon didn't even seem to care, like it had happened to him before...he was just chillin' in the bag for a good 20 minutes.
Pigeons in San Marcos Square

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