Saturday, 22 November 2008

More Architecture Affection

I think turrets are way cool and Prague has a fair few of them.

They may be almost as wonderful as balconies. P
robably better than balconies if the weather is bad.

I love bay windows, too.

Bill commented on these.

I think spires are awesome,

and bridges that link buildings across a street (Bill remarked on this one)

and amazing street lights.

Bill said this was an 'art deco' style building. He loves art deco, so I took his word for it. If you click on it, the decorations at the top look sort of art-deco-y and the curves and lines...I see what he meant.

Jane's tourist guidebook, which we borrowed one day when they were off on a bus trip of some kind, said this was an example of cubism.

The building is called the Black Madonna because of her.

I didn't love what we jokingly referred to as 'The People's Buildings', reminiscent of the flat we stayed in on our first trip to Prague 6 or 7 years ago. All the buildings were just concrete slabs with holes for doors and windows. I asked Bill if that was how they came up with the name 'Communist Block'. In spite of it not being very attractive, it was still part of history and therefore fascinating.

I've no idea about who built this building and really, it's not awful. It has clean lines and lots of windows for light, something only fully appreciated by those living in locations with very short (and long) days. It's the grey colour and the style of the figures that made me slot it into the 'communist block' category. Out of curiosity I translated the words over the door, using Google Translate (marvelous stuff on the internet, isn't there?). It says: "Ostava employee pension and sickness insurance OSR". That qualifies as "Power to the Workers", doesn't it?

I didn't mind the black, clean lines of this modern-looking building

but I confess to preferring black antiquity in all its gaudy spendour.

Not only were the buildings wonderful colours,

so were the trees.

I would love to live on this street, wouldn't you?

Mind, it's also the square where I nearly got killed by a smart ass young Czech driver who whipped his car around the corner and into a parking place, narrowly missing me. I was standing in the car parking area taking a photo of a doorway (subject of at least another 2 or 3 posts, probably) and never saw him coming. The whole thing took everyone's breath away, not just mine. One more step back and there may have been one less pesky tourist in Prague. I muttered a few of my choicest words, which Chris was dying to hear me repeat, but I wouldn't.

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