Join me on my summer holiday as I travel (mostly) through Italy—as always, in search of beautiful sites, sculpture and all things sculpture-ish.
My time is Genova was wonderful—a surprisingly interesting time in a city bustling with a rich, muscular energy. Although the city is not one of Italy's "top draws" for tourists, there is certainly plenty to see: a generous helping of "aesthetic evidence" of Genova's multiple centuries as a top player in the international world of shipping, finance and trade. Walking the streets of the city, one realizes that Genova did not develop itself through high-minded callings like academics, religion or artistic patronage. Genova built itself through hard work and industry. As a visitor, I felt like I was jumping into a pumping human bloodstream that would have existed with or without me. Tourists, though welcome, are not the focus in Genova.
One also realizes that much of Genova's wealth and power involved the port—as it has for nearly a thousand years. No doubt, Christopher Columbus and Andrea Doria began many an adventure casting-off from this location. As trade grew, the port would be expanded and modernized. And, as new technology emerged—like the introduction of transatlantic passenger liners carrying Italian migrants to the New World—the port would have to adapt again.
The first part of the Stazione Marittima di Genova was built in the late 1880's—to help organize passengers arriving from and (mostly) leaving for the Americas. Work stopped during The Great War, resuming around 1930. The ram's head capital, shown above, is a handsome decorative element from the late Nineteenth Century. For some 135 years, he's been greeting visitors lucky enough to visit la Superba.
We'll continue our summer holiday tomorrow.
Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well! Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
We also can be found in Pittsburgh's historic "Strip District" at Mahla & Co. Antiques (www.mahlaantiques.com) or in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).
Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only). 917-446-4248
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