Last week we met at Santa Croce for class. Ironically, I would like to point out that this is where my dentist told me to come when he learned I was coming to Florence for the semester. Santa Croce is a beautiful church where Michelangelo and Galileo are entombed. It was beautiful. There’s also a tomb for Dante in Santa Croce because the Florentines keep petitioning to get his body back, but since his body is in Ravenna, the tomb is empty. Many famous Florentines other than the two mentioned are entombed here as well. Below is the facade of Santa Croce.

 
 I think it’s fascinating to see so much of the Florentine history preserved. On the other hand, I definitely don’t want people making pilgrimages to see my hip bone– I find that WAY creepy. I mean, really, please let my bones rest in peace. Below is a chapel in the church painted by Giotto. You can see big patches missing– that’s because at some point the church inserted tombs in the chapel. When removed, much of the fresco was ruined. In Italy, the restoration policy is that the restorer is not as good as the original artist: the restored piece should blend in to the rest of the painting but you should be able to tell that it is not original. In Florence this is accomplished by retouching in one color in small lines so that the lines are visible. Because of the history of the piece, and that the space missing is so large, it has just been left as is.
 
Above, Michelangelo’s tomb. Below, Galileo’s tomb.

Below is the facade of Santa Maria Novella. No photographs allowed inside, so sorry that this is all you get. This is where I’m going to lead tours, provided I get trained sometime soon. Also inside the Santa Maria Novella is an incredibly realistically rendered fresco of Dante’s Inferno– the levels of hell. At the current moment I’m seriously considering writing my paper about this fresco and the book, which I am not looking forward to re-reading. It’s probably because I made so much fun of Yoojin takign the Inferno class… feel free to mock me now.

 
On a side note (that’s totally intended for the roomie), I almost bought Oskar a girlfriend at this open air market that Morgan and I went to, but I couldn’t figure out how to get her home. For those of you who don’t know, Oskar is our cactus. Yes, we have a cactus with a name that we take care of. Anyway, roomie, there’s the selection below… perfect, right? Hahaha.
Take care, all. I’ll probably have one more update before the weekend, and then the update from Venice Carnivale!
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