This and That in Porto

I have a ton of photos from Porto so I’m going to share them. Why not?

If you go down, down, down some hills you reach the Douro River and the interesting area called Ribeira. The famous Porto wine was stored here, and still is, and exported too. The day was mostly cloudy and rainy so I didn’t get any photos I liked but this gives you an idea of what it was like. There are still large buildings for storage and, of course, many places for tasting. Porto wine is sweet and I seldom drink it. I have occasionally dumped some in my spaghetti sauce which gives it a good flavour. We had a cocktail made with white Porto but I couldn’t really taste it.

This is one of the six bridges spanning the Douro near Porto. Two of them had Eiffel-as in Eiffel Tower-involved. He was a genius with metal sculpture and building. This is the Dom Luis I bridge.

We rode a tourist trolley that circled around Porto which was fun.

Isn’t this strange? I saw two of them in two churches in Porto. I asked a person working in one what it meant and he said it was the third eye, as in the one talked about in India. Apparently, this saint had visions. I couldn’t find out any more about it.

I couldn’t make this any lighter and it looks rather confusing. It was a sculpture in Sao Francisco showing the tree of Jessie which shows the ancestral history of Jesus. This church was once Franciscan which I believe was once an order with very plain, bare churches. The Portuguese later decorated it and everything inside is gilded in gold and in the Baroque style.

A close up view of just some of the gilding.

I passed an antique/used furniture store and this caught my eye. It made me wonder about the history and what it was worn to. A dance hall, a party, carnival, a parade? I’d love to know.

I love shops like this, stuffed with all sorts of food and drink items. Such great ambiance.

Another exterior, and interior, that I loved.

View

There are splendid views on top of the Pompidou Museum.

A giant sculpture of a thumb by Cesar is outside.

The famous venting system. The whole building is sort of inside out.

The view. Not bad.

Christmas trees leading into Georges, the restaurant at the top.

Here is a slice of the Pompidou down a narrow street.

Out

I made myself go out for a short time to get a photo of the sunset. When the sun isn’t shining on you, it’s somewhat bearable even though it got up to 110 degrees. I just drove a short distance from my Mom’s to the edge of a nearby golf course, one of many, to get my photo.

I’m always a sucker for reflections in water.

Nearby are these sculptures of metal which are actually part of a system to handle flooding. I’ve seen water flowing out of the horse’s mouths before.

You can sort of see the tunnels through which the water goes which lead to a canal run off.

Looking up into a horse’s mouth. They are really big. I’ve seen them from the road before but didn’t really register thier size.

The freeways in Phoenix are amazing.

Views and Paintings

It’s hard to beat a stroll through the Orsay Museum, once a train station that they had to foresight to preserve and use.

A look down at the main gallery from up above. You can see that it was once a train station.

You can see Sacre Coeur on top of Montmartre from various windows.

I love the color of the dresses on these dancer by Degas.

Lots of sculptures to see.

That beautiful clock.

 

Picasso Museum

While I was in Paris I made a trip to the Picasso Museum. I visited years ago when I first moved to Paris. It was closed for years for a renovation and I wanted to visit but the long lines the first week kept me away. I tried again a few months later but upon arriving at 10am found it wouldn’t be open until 11. It now opens at 9:30. So, on a rainy morning I tried again and got in. I’ve read that the setup of the collection is controversial and rather confusing and that there are many small rooms and dead ends with the art rather mixed up. I enjoyed strolling around myself. I especially enjoyed the architecture of the old section. I’m not a huge fan of Picasso. He seems to be a misogynist to be with an obsession with women’s breasts but I have to say that the written explanations on the walls around the museum gave me an appreciation of all he did. His early work before he started taking everything apart and sort of throwing it on canvas is interesting to see. He was very prolific and tried just about every medium available. Interestingly, he applied for French citizenship in 1940 but was turned down because he was a friend of an anarchist. I also read that he and a friend once stole two sculpted heads from the Louvre but returned them when the Mono Lisa was stolen. He lived in France with his Spanish passport for the rest of his life vowing not to return to Spain while Franco was in power.

 

IMG_1116[1] I saw this on a wall in the Marais near the Picasso Museum. I think it’s of Picasso. He always wore the French blue and white sweater. They are sold in the Museum shop for 80 Euros.

IMG_1046[1]
A lovely staircase.

IMG_1044[1]
I thought this was so beautiful.

IMG_1058[1]
Sort of a typical sculpture.

IMG_1072[1]
He didn’t do many landscapes. This one caught my eye because it was of a place called Royan which Maurice and I had just visited. He was inspired by Cezanne and they had a personal relationship. There is, in fact, one of Cezanne’s painting from Picasso’s personal collection, there in the museum. I have to say that I much prefer Cezanne.


A video I took of some metal sculptures by Picasso.