i have so many balls in the air at the moment that this blog and my blog reading has pretty much been thrown up up up in the hope that i can eventually catch it and continue on as if nothing had happened. [wishful thinking?]
OK so milan. it probably wouldn't be the place i would choose if i were going to pick a city of my dreams to travel to in italy [of course you think florence or rome or the vast countryside] - but it's what was chosen for me... and i'm not in the least bit upset about my fortune.
i mean really. how can you go wrong with old buildings, a massive gothic chruch, wrought iron details, red architectural accents, a distinct color yellow for buildings, shutters, cute new fiats and vespas everywhere, big plazas, mosaics, magnolias blooming, fancy shops, fresh mozzarella cheese, well dressed people, gelato, the best cappuccinos and pastries, chandeliers, and a bunch of people talking - no make that singing - around you [and about your art].
we stayed in a loft - this was the courtyard. it was the home of an artist and her son [which i didn't know at all when i first inquired about her space, but we lucked out. toys for the little to play with, and an incredibly kind host]. like many things in italy there was this wonderful duality - a building with SUCH character - and then through this narrow tiny door with a key that you had to turn over and over to lock and unlock it - and you were in a completely modern space - high ceilings, ikea kitchen, tall white walls.... surreal. the director of the gallery [who has lived in many cities in europe and traveled all over the world] told me that she felt like milan was a city of secret gardens - through doors lay courtyards of opulence and beauty if you were able to find them. it seemed true - the building the gallery was in had an amazing garden, and as i walked around i would fervently look through gates and doors to see if i could catch glimpse....
i didn't get a chance to do too many touristy things, 1. because i was installing and 2. because when you are traveling with a two year old you have to attempt to keep a napping schedule :)
but we did walk through this amazing cemetery - the cimetrio monumentale. i've never been to a cemetery like it. row after row of huge mausoleums. amazing grave markers and mosaics....
these photos just about killed me every time i saw them. so amazingly haunting.
we also made it to the castello storzesco . this HUGE castle that houses i don't know how many museums and is one type of architecture built upon another... when you think CASTLE - this could be the huge version that broke the mold.
one of my absolute favorite moments. these stripes. in an alcove on your way through one of the many exists of this castle.
i will remember that the little played with fountains here... and stray cats... and pigeons, and threw her first money into a fountain. and she met a baby - mathilda - they screamed and cooed at one another with glee.
i didn't have a bad cappuccino the entire trip. i mean really - you would think that we could make one just as good in the states. but we don't. really. we don't. at least not consistently.
so milan is the center of fashion and shopping, right? so evident by the windows...
there are MANY MANY more photos - and still a few more to come... you can see them all in my MILANO flickr set . i will try and show you venice - and explain how magical it was there [considering i was there for one afternoon]... and my show... yes. the show. the reason. the why. the how i got to go.... that too... but here's one of the gallery women all dressed up and adorable for the opening