Showing posts with label italy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label italy. Show all posts

Thursday 31 August 2023

Culture Wars Florence in Three Fires, Denise Mina Edinburgh book festival 2023

Denise Mina held a lively chat with fellow crime writer Christopher Brookmyre

In her new book Three Fires, award-winning author Mina re-imagines the 'Bonfire of the Vanities', a series of fires lit throughout Florence.


Set in 15th century Florence, Three Fires tells of the story of Florentine fanatical monk Girolamo Savonarola and the first populist uprising. – 'whip people up about a common enemy'. 

-        create bogeymen, alternative society, indefinable and attack details, give people Banner, your tribe is winning. 


There is the French King Charles the Affable, and theological discussions – the Proud Boys bullies; the Tepids – the centrists who hold the power. Still plagues and wars.


The Printing Press had just been invented and BOOKS. 

Savonarola asked, why does no one listen to the poor, our government is corrupt. Florence changed at that moment. And the struggle between low and high art. 


As long as we’re divided, we’re containable – no commonality. People have lives to get on with, to keep society going. We need to listen to people. 

If in power too long, there is a physical change to brain chemistry and become more callous. Time limits on power. 

Thursday 18 April 2019

ITALY images


Photos from my much loved trips to Italy – the land of art, great diversity, history, beauty, creativity. Italia and its connections to Scotland. 
Renaissance, Michelangelo, Leonardo Da Vinci, …..
I have visited Florence, Venice, Milan, Verona, Sienna, Tuscany, Rome, Abruzzo, Sicily, Barga, Lake Garda,

wet street Sienna

The Florence vistas, the mountain villages of Abruzzi, olive picking, the wet streets of Sienna,

Lake Garda

Thursday 31 January 2019

Nations Apart: Turbulent times

Burns and Mozart both lived in times of huge turbulence - late 18th century. Burns 1759 - 1776. Mozart 1756 - 1791.
Robert Burns retold and recharged the great tales and songs of the Scottish nation in such unique ways. 
I visited Vienna last year where the genius musicians Strauss and Mozart told the tales of central Europe, Austria (population 8m) and of the great Danube river.

The poet Bob Dylan lived through the turbulent times of the Cold war and the civil rights marches. 
In Paris in the 18th century Impressionism painters expressed the great creative out pouring and flair, to see in new ways. 

Italy’s Renaissance (14th century to 17th) took two dimensional art not only to three dimensions but to stratospheric new heights and told of Italy’s great struggles and love of beauty.  

All these highly unique stories matter …

Wednesday 24 July 2013

Rome Rapheal Paintings

The paintings in the Vatican by Raphael and Michelangelo are inspirational and the love and work that went into these works of art.   

Plus a few images of the light in Rome. 

Tuesday 23 July 2013

Sicily Photos

Sicily is a green, beautiful and very large island covered in vineyards. Pink and orange houses were dotted amid the lush green olive groves and a translucent sea evaporated into the turquoise glow of the Mediterranean sky in warm whispers. Travel and holidays for me are a chance for free creative thought and writing. 
Some photos of the Greek Temple and amphitheatre on Sicily.   
The last evening the waves took up, leaving a brilliant turquoise wash and soft luminous light as we walked the long shorelines.

Monday 15 July 2013

Rome Photos

I have had my first trip to Rome and Sicily. Hot! We arrived at the villa overlooking the romantic Roman hills. The sun was low and warmly welcoming. (all roads lead to Rome, when in Rome)  We walked over the impressive centuries old steps of the Coliseum and along past the Roman forum, where there are so many old stories. 

We visited the Papal Vatican museum, the holy city and the vastly decorated walls of St Peters. We viewed the craftsmanship of the paintings by Raphael and Michelangelo’s Sistine chapel, that stared down over us as if both warning and inspiring on man’s heavenly aspirations, and we stared in awe. The Vatican is one of those places bestowed with so much colourful and turbulent history that it felt both strange and familiar to walk on those revered and well worn marble and mosaic floors. 
We entered the dimmed and hushed Sistine chapel adorned with Michelangelo’s majestic glories to God. I am not sure what I expected; the lower half was painted as curtains and the chapel is a much taller and darker room than I foresaw. These glories to God were painted with divine hopes and as the crowds follow behind us, they seem to mirror the soaring images painted on the walls in an all too real way, and that is the memory I take away with me – the shared hopes of people for a better way. 
I ask my son if he was impressed. He is not into iconic religious images and his view was that the images captured now by the Hubble spaceship are much more incredible and inspirational. Perhaps he missed the incredible feat of how the Sistine chapel was painted at that time and at such a great height. I am not religious but this is sure inspiring. 

Later we loitered at the packed fairylit Trevi fountain and we ate at the Peroni restaurant where there was that fun spirit and energy we encountered once before in Paris. A small man in a red T shirt, known as Mr Chef, popped out at times to salute his guests – when there was much clapping and laughter as he produced his famous frankfurter cakes!  

I have been adding my ITALY photos of the past 5 years, from Barga, Lake Garda, Florence, Venice, Abrusso and Rome, you might enjoy -