My love affair with old buildings continues in the city of @CaldasdaRainha
Influences of art nouveau is everywhere, showing off its beautiful organic flowing design harmonious with nature around it. Other buildings of later years still show off their once magnificent glory with azure tiles, curly balconies and statuesque symmetry.
Questo alberghetto, ormai fantasma, mi ha salutata appena sono entrata in questa città. Anzi ancor prima di arrivare, curiosando su Maps.
Se ne sta lì, solo, con la gente che passa davanti, con i negozi che aprono e chiudono, con le macchine.
Cosa non avevo notato subito erano queste due creature magiche, un po' donne, un po' muse. Sicuramente un po' streghe. Quella di destra deve avermi fatto un incantesimo perché l'ho ritrovata, forse per caso o forse no, che mi guardava da una cartolina d'epoca in uno scenario totalmente diverso.
Ora ha deciso di rimanere con me.
‘And she forgot the stars, the moon, and sun,
And she forgot the blue above the trees,
And she forgot the dells where waters run,
And she forgot the chilly autumn breeze;
She had no knowledge when the day was done,
And the new morn she saw not: but in peace
Hung over her sweet Basil evermore,
And moisten’d it with tears unto the core.’
John White Alexander, Isabella and the Pot of Basil (1897). This painting portrays Isabella from Keats’s poem ‘Isabella, or the Pot of Basil’, itself inspired by Bocaccio’s Decameron. This painting hangs at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
In 1890 Alexander moved to Paris, where he met James Abbott McNeill Whistler, who introduced him to many of the leading figures of the European Symbolist movement. These painters and writers were interested in dreams and the imagination, and elements of macabre fantasy often appear in their work. During the ten years he spent in Paris, Alexander experimented with decorative and decadent themes, often employing the slender, sinuous lines of the Art Nouveau style. This painting is the culmination of the artist’s time spent in Paris. .