architecture

Eastbound

Lighting mural

We met long-time, rarely seen friends at the restaurant of a Pueblo center honoring the nineteen pueblos of New Mexico for a languid brunch. I found the architectural details quite interesting. This lighting inset with mural: fun.

Dance circle

And in the courtyard, a dance circle. No one was dancing when we checked, but I liked seeing the linear footstep patterns that gave clues to the patterns of the dancers’ movements.

Leftover conference

And, while the ladies retired to the restroom, the gentlemen chatted carefully holding the leftovers. Great guys!

Solo beeve

Then it was time to begin the eastward trek. Over the first pass, we were in rangeland again.

NM penasco

However, we had a few miles of colorful, rugged landscape to go.

NM strata cerro

Rugged, colorful, and stratigraphic.

NM lnscp w train

And, sometimes, complete with train.

Tucumcari irrigation

Then, by Tucumcari, we found row crops in irrigated fields. Grain?

TX windfarm

Somehow, when westbound we did not notice how large this wind farm is in the TX panhandle. Gigantic. Operated by a division of Southern Company. [Goo-ing indicates this is the Cactus Flats facility, with 43 wind turbines.]

TX wind cattle

Very Texas to have cattle and wind plants coexisting. Jessayin: we went through TX twice on this trip, and never set foot in the state. [You can only manage that if you pick the section of TX you cross VERY carefully; we picked the panhandle.]

OK sunset

OK sunset.

I was going to title this “Don Dinero,” but it didn’t fit. We saw a pawnshop with that name in ABQ; “Don Dinero” means Mr Money.

Adobe-city

Wooden patio bench

The other day I learned that the city of Santa Fé’s architecture overseers permit forty-four shades of adobe, whether of clay, or of the far more common cement stuccoing (if I have it right).

Lilac artsy gal

I realized by the end of today, that I had a bunch of shots with different adobe(like) walls in them.

Sectioned giant head

So, here’s a chance for you to compare shades/hues/tints/colors.

Messy wisteria patio

What names would you use for the various, um, terra cotta shades?

Maybe vibernum

It seems I also managed to get a bunch of flower pictures today.

Canyon road long wall

The flower colors—and organic shadow shapes—do highlight the natural light brown shades of the walls.

Canyon Road dorr

I also like the weathered wood matched with the adobe.

Canyon Road gallery porch

This building is not unusual in having different parts/wings/walls in different shades, and in having the normally shadowed porch the lightest shade of all.

Window Mark White garden

That large tree-trunk shadow is from a cottonwood, álamo in Spanish.

Maybe apple

This is probably some kind of ornamental apple.

Parking lot n beyond

Here are shade-variations on commercial buildings downtown.

Upon reflection, photographing the adobe walls was easier than naming the shades, and far more interesting.

Santa Fé potpourri

Closed door

Closed alley(?) gate, New Mexico History Museum.

Acoma facade copy

Façade/roofline copying Acoma church/mission/convento, New Mexico Museum of Art.

Plaza obelisk

Obelisk, center of plaza. All Spanish land grants legal descriptions near Santa Fé are measured from this point. The plaza used to continue two blocks east and two west from the remaining portion.

Holy water hotel StFrancis lobby

St. Francis Hotel, holy water in lobby. With lapdogs. The beeswax candles are only lighted at night. The name dates to 2008; prior to that, it was the De Vargas Hotel, and it relocated here in 1924.

Hotel StFrancis lobby fireplace

During the 2008 renovations, this old fireplace surround was discovered intact behind later materials. It was a surprise find. Note that to the left is the doorway to the Gruet tasting room; sadly, we skipped it.

Capitol leg art

Art in capitol walkway. The mandate to acquire/buy art dates to 1992.

Capitol rotunda up

Rotunda ceiling. This 1966 building is round, the only state capitol building to be so. There is no dome.

Capitol exterior

Capitol exterior, state seal sculpture above main entrance.

Old not adobe

Historic building that is not adobe, and has not been adobe-ized.

Stag or elk

The followign are all modern pots. Deer or elk?

Taos modern

Taos pottery is known for the mica flakes in the clay.

Indian bingo

Channel 4 is an Albuquerque station.

Big bird

Big bird. But what species?

Hummingbird

Hummingbird.

Threatening lizards

Threatening lizards. Additionally creepy that the faces aren’t depicted.

Airbrush style

Airbrush style. If this is in the clay pre-firing, I hypothesize that the technique is very complex/difficult.

Empty birdfeeders

Sunset view

Last night’s sunset. This landscape is dominated by light and shadow and shape. No wonder artists flock here. That is the visual dominance; living here you also notice the wind, dust, and temperature. Also sounds of birds (here), perhaps cattle elsewhere.

Drywash moonscape

We cross a dry wash to our casita. In the solar lights along the path, the footprints in the sand looked like a lunar landscape with the treads of sports shoes not those of space suit boots.

Kitchen still life

Here’s a still life from the counter and wall left of the range in the main house.

Climbingmanhandle

This is the handle of the cupboard in the left edge of the photo above. The rest of the knobs are normal.

Rancho breakfast omelette

That’s Green Chili Bread on the left, quite spicy for bread. From the ovens of the restaurant/store we ate at last night. Paired with a normal, simple omelette. Superb breakfast.

Foot in pool

After breakfast, I went out to the pool, took my shoes and socks off, and stood in the shallows. The Foot in the wild!

OKeefe BellaDonna 1939 crop

Our main focused activity today was to visit the historic plaza of Santa Fé, eat lunch, then head for the Georgia O’Keefe Museum. Stunning paintings, of course. Loved the photos of her, as a window into the person through her choice of garments, shoes, accessories, etc. This is a crop of O’Keefe’s 1939 painting Bella Donna.

OKeefe library titles

Here are titles from her library. The display included a few sentences from a 1963 letter in which she observed that she’d taken three-and-a-half months to go around the world, then went across the Pacific to Bangkok and back with island stops. She went on to note that twice she’d been to Egypt and the place that stood out to her always was Peru. I assume the mountains….

Steiglitz photos

Of course, there are few Stieglitz photos. And there were soundless moving images of them together, interesting—he seems to be putting up with being filmed while she seems to be somewhat cajoling him to participate (my hypothesis).

These are considered by some the first abstract photos. These two are from 1930 and 1929. Others in the sextet dated back to 1926. They are lovely dark, ghostly smudges, and not the kind of image I think of when I think of AS photos.

Off to cocktail hour chatting and laughing.

The title refers to my viewscape out the picture window in front of me at the casita, and what I noticed as I tried to formulate a title for this post. Very stream of unconsciousness.

Visiting the living past

Acoma view down

We visited an ancient pueblo (village) atop a mesa today…still without electricity and with perhaps fifteen year-round, permanent residents. This is the view down; I have no good shots of the view up at the plateau-top architecture. This is considered the winter housing, roughly, of the people. In summer, they mostly lived down by their fields on the flats below.

Cistern of three

There are no flowing water sources atop the mesa, and this was an open cistern the people used anciently, and empty today. Residents now customarily drive water in barrels and plastic containers up the steep, paved road to their homes. Part of the road is visible in the first photo.

Oldest in pueblo

These are among the documented oldest walls/homes in the pueblo. Using a cannon and other means, Spanish thugs destroyed much of the pueblo in 1599, so the many buildings standing in the 16th C were more than decimated.

Kiva double ladder

This is a double ladder to the roof of a kiva that post-dates the Spanish destruction. The Spanish were keen to convert the Acoma to Christianity and get them to abandon their pagan practices. But the Acoma people disguised their previously circular kiva ceremonial rooms by making them rectangular like the house rooms. The second ladder behind the double one descends into the kiva. Except for a few special events, only men entered the kivas. Our guide, the young woman shown, did not say if that is still true, but I’m guessing it is. The Acoma are matriarchal, and the women own the homes, fields, crops, and most other household items.

Horno edge

This humped structure is a baking oven, used for food not pottery. These days, I’m guessing they are mostly only used at special times of the year, and not on a weekly/monthly basis.

Mt taylor view

That snow-dusted mountain in the far distance is Mount Taylor, a sacred place to the native peoples of this region. The beams supporting the roof of the early 17th-C church atop the mesa were cut on the mountain and brought by the men of Acoma under order and direction of a Spanish priest. The Spanish did not permit four special beams used in the altar to touch the ground during the whole process of carrying them BY HAND (not using animal labor) to the church. What high-handedness.

Casita walkway

Okay, switch gears. This is the walkway to the casita the Guru and I are staying in, an independent outbuilding of the main house, where the rest of the party are staying. The whole place is lovely, wonderful, and relaxing. Except maybe this stepped path for The Foot—no, really, it’s good exercise.

Casita view

Here’s the view from the living room area of our casita. See? Relaxing.

Chile relleno yum

We went to a nearby restaurant for our evening meal…boy, are we lucky; the food is outstanding; I mean, it could not be better. Oh, yum. This is a version of chile relleno I’ve never had, with a splayed roasted chile stuffed with a mixture of corn kernels, mushrooms, and pine nuts, with a bit of cheese on top. Soooooo tasty. I expect we’ll be eating here again, perhaps as soon as tomorrow. We shall see.

Out of questions for today

Palladium window

Not technically a Palladian (not Palladium) window, since it doesn’t have the flanking windows that make a trio, only the central arched one.

What does a Palladian window have to do with Easter? What do ham dinners have to do with Easter? What does my life have to do with Easter?

Of architecture and horticulture (briefly)

Louvre down pyr mini

I was quite flattered today when the Guru asked me for a France picture I had taken, then turned into a good desktop background. Good to me is dark, so the icons show up. The photo is an asymmetrical shot of the down-pyramid at the Louvre, heavily tweaked.

Shrub name we dont say

And this is a shrub I bought so long ago I have forgotten its name. Turns out that it thrives with spent coffee grounds dumped on its roots, and little additional horticultural attention.

Looooov(re) light

Louvre ceiling angular

Still discombobulated from the cross-Atlantic time-change. Managing to fall back asleep when I awaken at appropriate France-time, yet feeling rather listless, languid, and lethargic as evening rolls around. Like now…time for another episode of Counterpart anyway.

Louvre ceiling circular

These two images are both of light-above at the Louvre, in a gallery and in a stair? connecting? area. As we took escalators from this floor to that, I distinctly thought…this is a change? I may be wrong, but I felt that there had been a major architectural upgrade to the visitor experience since we last visited.

Memories

I’m offering two photos of each city we visited….

Marseille step lane

We might even call this Memory Lane, Marseille.

Marseille rudder view

Rudder view, dry dock boat, old harbor.

Aix side door

On to Aix…love the shadows on the wall to the right, especially in contrast to those angled ones on the door wall.

Aix shopping tease

The shop attendees do step out onto the street when no one’s inside…but not to hail passersby, usually, instead to smoke. Love the rocks holding the racks and the shoeless manikins.

Avignon narrow street

And in Avignon…narrow streets, some construction, often high crowns (suggests rain can gush here).

Avignon courtyard

And sometimes a courtyard peek…usually no longer gardens, but turned into parking. The fountain at the back was preserved…and appears lonely with only a few companion woody plants.

Paris Seine scene

Paris…Paris is always Seine-side to me.

Paris tourist impulse buys

A shopkeeper believes this assortment will entice the many tourists streaming by headed to Montmartre. Why all the hard-sided luggage? Do the vendors push some cheap knockoffs? Who buys a suitcase to trundle around while sight-seeing? Someone must…makes no sense to me. Postcards and miniature Eiffel Towers, yes, but carry-on roller bags?

Marseille marmite sides

Okay, one food picture just like during the trip. This is the marmite (say mahr-meet), or seafood stew, that I had in Marseille. Served with dry bread to soak up the juices. And, here, also with grated hard cheese and sweetened mustard. I didn’t know about this stew before the trip, and now I do.

This is one reason to travel—learning something that becomes a reason to return. I had thought I would find Marseille gritty and off-putting. Perhaps before the harbor was turned into a tourist haven, when it was still fisherman and mariners, with smells of oil and fish and dirty sea-water, I would have struggled to find the charming. No longer. Am I a pushover?

Tower tour aka tour tour

Twobirds onetour

Enjoying the sunshine from a bench with a stupendous view, the sounds were of a light wind, a mowing crew, and crows. Here’s a crow duo. Such photographic timing!

Blossom tour

Finally, we set off, keeping an eye on the tour. Tower is tour in French.

Backlit birds tour

Aha, tower, backlit, again with birds. The iPhone goes all drama with strong backlighting.

Bride tour

From this bridge, the tower is great background. We saw four bride–photographer groups here. Same time. One group had a Mercedes limo waiting for them, parked illegally.

Isle tour

There’s a narrow island down the Seine, I assume something to do with navigation and bridge engineering…engineering, anyway. Great view upstream of the tower.

Edge tour

We crossed back to “our side” of the river…one glance back at the tower before heading into the side streets back toward “our place.”

Glass bridge

The tower isn’t the only striking architecture here. Loved the tube-mesh surrounding this hobbit-trail.

1912arch

This tilework was in the arch over the main doorway of an elementary school built in 1912. I think the blue tiles (bottom) have faded and clouded with white in the intervening century.

Champs tour

Our home-bound route took us back through the Champs de Mars, so here’s one last look at THAT tower.

Beef tartare

Food pic of the day: beef tartare starter (entrée in French—yes, slightly confusing—also can be used for entrance, that is, place to enter). We had a fancy lunch out…. Total yum. Our tour helped us justify the chocolate-lava dessert, no?

In an amateur way, this post with many photos of the same subject honors Claude Monet’s Rouen Cathedral series….