Traditional, Horrific, & Ridiculously Amusing CZECH STATUARY along with a Few Other Related Artworks.
With Czechia’s position in central Europe, it has been invaded many times & has been taken over from time to time by one power or another. Given that, there are of course many images attesting to the difficult times they have had during wars & occupations. What is less easy to understand is how so much humour has been retained through it all, & how forgiving the people & government seem to be of artists’ poking fun of the country. This is what makes it such a fun place to visit. This will give you a sampling, ranging from the ordinary to the horrific to the amusing & controversial, all jumbled together.
The great Valencian painter, Salvador Abril y Blasco (1862 – 1924)
Salvador Abril y Blasco was born in Valencia in 1862 and commenced his artistic studies at the age of 12 at the San Carlos Academy of Fine Arts in Valencia, alongside his more well-known contemporary, Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida. Abril excelled in the painting of landscapes, his speciality being seascapes which gave him his greatest triumphs both in Spain and abroad. There are ten known paintings that Salvador Abril painted in Xàbia as well as several photographs taken by himself and some notes for his story Memories of my excursions (Valencia 1915). No doubt there are other unknown works in private collections and it is hoped that eventually they will come to light to give due recognition to a great Valencian painter who, like Sorolla and other artists, came to Xàbia and fell in love with its coasts.
From earliest recorded history Malta has been subject to numerous invasions and occupations. From the Punic Wars between Rome and Carthage to the Moorish invasion in the 8th century, followed by the Vikings /Normans, Aragon, Spain, and the Knights Hospitaller. The Knights were responsible for the defence against the Ottoman Siege of 1565 and subsequently built what is now the capital Valetta. The British took over in 1815, and created a military base that withstood attack by the Axis powers in World War 2. Britain granted Malta independence in 1964. Malta joined the EU in2003 and is now on the front line of immigration from North Africa. The assassination of an investigative journalist threatens to uncover corruption amongst the ruling elite.
Katsushika Hokusai is considered to be one of the greatest masters in the history of art.
He lived to be eighty-nine years old and produced more than 30,000 paintings, sketches, woodblock prints and images for picture books.
His most well-known pictures are his many woodblock prints and paintings of Mount Fuji, the most famous being The Great Wave off Kanagawa.
He also produced many beautiful images of Geishas, sumo wrestlers, plants, birds and animals.
His work was greatly admired by and inspired artists such as Van Gogh and Monet.
The ship we think of as Endeavour had three identities. First, she was built in Whitby as The Earl of Pembroke and spent four years carrying coal from the Tyne to London. She was then plucked from obscurity by the Royal Navy and refitted as Endeavour to circle the globe on a three-year voyage of discovery under James Cook (1768-1771).
Following that period of celebrity, she returned to obscurity: three years as a naval supply ship to the Falkland Islands.
She was sold to a private buyer in 1775 and became the Lord Sandwich. Leased back to the navy the following year, she carried troops across the Atlantic to fight for the British in the American War of Independence, later serving as an appalling prison ship. In 1778, she came to an ignominious end: scuttled by the British to prevent the French navy, American allies, from entering the harbour at Newport, Rhode Island. However, some form of resurrection may be at hand; marine archaeologists believe they have found her.