Tag Archives | Art & Architecture

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Arne Maasik Kahn catalogu, Estoniae

Estonia

Thanks to its position between East and West, Estonia has often been a battleground. Over the years, Denmark, Germany, Russia, Sweden and Poland have all fought over it. In 1906, when the country was under Russian rule, Louis Kahn’s family moved to the United States. Kahn was five years old. He went on to become one […]

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Genoa artichokes copy

Genoa

One of the best reasons for visiting Liguria (capital, Genoa) is the wonderful food. With its long coastline, the region is renowned for its excellent seafood. Then there are regional products like foccaccia, farinata (a delicious chickpea pancake), Albenga artichokes, salt cod, and, of course, pesto. Pesto championships On 16 April, the capital of the […]

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Japan

Japan

Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is one of the busiest cities in the world – all neon lights and skyscrapers – but hop on a bullet train and within a couple of hours you could be relaxing at an onsen (hot spring) in a green tea bath, in the middle of a forest, with nothing […]

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Skylines

Skylines

August 2015 Just over a year ago, my friend, Yolanda, and I were asked if we’d like to write about architectural skylines around the world. Not just any old skylines; these would made out of our chosen buildings to create an imaginary skyline that would hopefully encapsulate the history, culture and heart of the cities […]

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Two Temple Place

Cotton to Gold

March 2015 From time to time, the charitable foundation, the Bulldog Trust, opens the charming Two Temple Place for excellent exhibitions. This one is no exception. ‘Cotton to Gold’ brings together some of the extraordinary collections of wealthy philanthropists who made their fortunes in the Industrial North West. The collections were generously loaned by the […]

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cremona violin copy

Cremona

Cremona was home to three of the most important violin-making families: Stradivari, Guarneri and Amati. The recently opened Museo del Violino tells their story, and offers an insight into five centuries of violin-making. It also examines the method of construction and acoustic characteristics. A recent article suggested that the violion’s evolution might have been a magical accident, rather than design: an […]

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Chiara Vigo, Bisso

Chiara Vigo, Maestro di Bisso

A recent story about tiny sea snail teeth that were stronger than titanium reminded me of the time I met a Sardinian woman who harvested ‘bisso’, strong silk-like fibres secreted by a marine bivalve mollusc, known as pinna nobilis or ‘fan mussel’. Chiara Vigo is an interesting woman; a descendant of 30 generations of bisso-weavers, […]

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Tunisian mother & girls copy

Tunisia

Tataouine, in southern Tunisia, is famous for the trogolodyte buildings of the native Berber population. It’s so other-worldly, that director George Lucas used it as a backdrop for one of his Star Wars films. The ‘Festival of the Ksour Saharien’ is a music and cultural festival held in the desert. It’s the perfect opportunity to […]

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Venice

Venice

Venice was once a water-logged destination for those escaping the plague on mainland Italy. It became one of the most powerful Italian republics, a great maritime power, and centre for the world’s finest art and music. Today the city seems to be drowning under the weight of its success. Each year it’s invaded by tourists […]

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Devon

Devon

On my latest visit to Devon I discovered a vibrant craft scene that includes ceramics, blacksmithing, and glass-blowing, along with an incredible range of food and drinks. Read about Devon’s quality wine, beer and gin, organic edible flowers, jams, fresh fish and chilli, in my article for Discovering Devonshire Delights for Foodtripper.   Some of […]

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