Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Wordless Wednesday #22


Monday, August 23, 2010

National Ceramics Museum at the Palace of the Marquis of the Two Waters

The National Ceramics Museum was on my "must see" list for Valencia and that was before I knew it was housed in this fantastic 15th century palace. Though the Palacio de Marques de Dos Aguas (Palace of the Marquis of Two Waters), was built in the 1600's, this magnificently carved entrance wasn't added until 1740. According to ValenciaValencia.com, in 1949, the palace was purchased by the Ministry of Education to house the collection of ceramics donated by Dr Gonzalez Marti. I can't imagine a more impressive setting. It's like getting two museums for the price of one. You have to stop and stare before you even enter. As in much of Spain, the Madonna and child representation is ever present. I never tire of it, honestly. It's a beautiful thing...maybe I've finally hit on what I'll be collecting while here in Spain...hmmm...it's a thought!
If what I read is accurate, I think this was the origial front door. Not sure I would have had the vision to add to it, but I'm sure glad someone did...
Look at this precious little fountain. I assume that little cherub is hugging rather than strangling the swan...Right???
Talk about riding in style??? I know it was bumping going, but wow, it sure was impressive for the day!
All the marble...walls, floors, statues...my lands! As my friend, Irina, who is from the Ukraine and also lived for many years in Russia said, this is as fancy as the interiors of the palaces of the Russian czars and czarinas...
Fantastic chandeliers hang from the ceilings of every room...
Beautifully carved doors...of course!
All this and we haven't even really gotten to the ceramics part yet...
Ahhh, here's some...I'd love to have this little set sitting out on my patio...
Pretty fancy dining room...
No Spanish palace would be complete without a little chapel...
From the ceiling of the chapel...
Upstairs for more...
Look at this little fancy tiled fireplace facade...
Look at this cute little bed...pretty nice sleeping area with those curtains closed...nice and dark...
There were several globes full of these intricate paper flowers...
I'd like a little more privacy when it comes to bathing, but back then they probably had chamber maids bringing in pots of hot water, so...
More lovely marble walls...
Here's an unusual chandelier...it's ceramic...
Ceramic table...
Loved this marble pattern in the floor...
Here's another...
This is the ballroom. Interesting fact...the orchestra played from behind screens in the wall...
We've moved from marble statues to bronze ones...
Don't remember what this ceiling fresco was all about, but I'm sure it's impressive...I mean, they're perched on a cloud for goodness sakes...
Ceramic fountain of moorish design...
Another rendition of the Virgin Mary and the Baby Jesus....too large for my new collection, so I left it there. ;-)
I couldn't pry this one off the wall, so I left it too...you know I'm joking, right?
Some really old tiles from who knows when....well, someone knows, just not me...
This is an example of an item that is very collectible here in Spain...it's often a gift to a new graduate...Have a guess? It's an pen and ink set...
Love it when they developed more colors for the pottery...
This looks like an early Yadro piece to me...
I'd love to have one of this made for my house...many people have special ceramics tiles made for their gates...
This is representative of a traditional Valencian kitchen from back in the day...
The top floor is reserved for rotating exhibits. The following pieces are from a Japanese artist who hand paints these cermics with gold and platinum...truly something!
We were in this place way too long for Twelve and Eight, but I could have spent several more hours marvelling at it all...and because it was Saturday...it was FREE! Unbelieveable...Hasta luego...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Mercado Central in Valencia

Almost done with all my Valencia posts...only a few more to go...On our first day in Valencia, we visited the Mercado Central (Central Market), one of oldest fresh markets on Europe selling fruits, vegetables, meats and seafood to individuals as well as restaurants. According to Wikipedia, "the market combines metal, domes, glass, columns, and the memory of Gothic moderism, as if [in a cathedral]." It was indeed a sight to behold and well worth the visit. It was one of the first places we visited in Valencia because it would be closed the other days of our trip. We got there as their day was winding down, but we could tell some serious commerce had gone down in there.
The tiles on the facade of the building were stunning. The combination of materials used was very interesting and was all the intricate ironwork.
I thought it was interesting how many of the stalls have permanent signs. It was almost like walking down a streets with storefronts.
Can you guess what Eight is thinking?I love all the diffferent and colorful varieties of tomatoes available in Spain. Apparently, Valenica has its own variety...
Unbeknownst to me, these little slimy fellows that creep along my walkway are available for purchase at the Mercado Central. Maybe I should collect a few and cook them up...NOT!
It just isn't a market with the legs of ham...
More beautiful tilework inside. Something to appreciate as you carry your delicious purchases back to your kitchen...Hasta luego...

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