While Amsterdam is another city built on an ancient system of canals, it could hardly be more different than Venice.
The spatial aspects of both cities are unique in spite that each is flat to the sea. The Dutch, coming from the land, built yet more land. Venice… perching precariously on pilings anchoring only a few small unstable prehistoric islands, squatting in the shallows of a lagoon…
Protected by all those walls we walked in Croatia… Venice arched inwardly upward, hoarding the spoils of world trade well before any Dutch expansion.
The periods during which each reached maturity have much to do with their differences. Older by many centuries, Venice plyed the classic shipping trade routes inside the warmer enclosure of the Mediterranean, connecting Europe to the mid-east, the Indian sub-continent, & ultimately China. Its smaller size amassed some sense of the mysterious enclosure characterizing an “Oriental” quality.
outside the antique model of the world…
miniature inside the cincture of Gibraltar.
launched quintessential herbal seeds…
There is plenty of auto traffic, but all is rather subservient to the obvious first choice to ride bicycles… evidenced by the fact that there are more bikes than citizens!
Specific, well separated lanes are dedicated to bicycles & one must honor that or be threatened & cursed for being in their way! The cross-walks become sometimes complicated to get to the center islands where one waits to board the trams. Electronic tickets, touched at sensors upon both entering & leaving the car, calculate the fare for the distance being deducted from the balance. Oh! that we could learn such easy good sense in more of our cities in the States!
This is a stately old building, bridging over the main street which runs through & under its facade into a vaulted foyer echoing with Vivaldi.
Musical ensembles play outside modern entrances up into the museum… or down into the new depths enlarging antique spaces to accommodate essential modern facilities… I like this improvement’s mixing of clean functional lines with the original Gothic Victorian.
To be able to see almost the entire oeuvre of an artist who accomplished so much in only a decade chides my career, which began in paint while getting side-tracked by the fantasy of jewelry before the whimsey of bells.