Saturday, September 25, 2010

Day 10 - Wrapping Up in the Veneto Region: Padova's Greatest Art Treasure and the Walled Town of Citadella

Several days before leaving the states, a friend with a degree in art history asked us if we were planning to see the Giotto frescos at the Arena (Scrovegni) Chapel in Padova. After her glowing description (based on a paper she had done at KU), I decided that it was worth looking into. As with seeing the Last Supper in Milan, you have to make advance reservations, wait in line, go through a decontamination chamber, to see the work of art for exactly 15 minutes. A video is shown through much of the pre-viewing procedure, so you have some knowledge of what you are about to see. We were thankful for that preparation as there is so much to see in such a small amount of time.
The image above is but one small detail from one section of the fresco which covers the walls and ceiling of the chapel. To see more check out the official website from which this photo was downloaded:

Nancy and I left this chapel with a sense of awe similar to that after viewing the Leonardo's "Last Supper." In the case of the Giotto, however, we were less moved spiritually than with the "Last Supper," but so amazed at the emotional power, vitality, and humanity of this landmark painting in the history of western art.

Scrovegni Family Chapel
Thank you Kelly, for bringing this masterpiece to our attention!

Yesterday we fell into a conversation with two fellow American travelers at the train station. They told us about a nearby small town that was having a Medieval Festival this weekend, and that the town was completely encircled by a medieval wall. Long story shortened, we took a train ride to little Cittadella (meaning citadel) to see what was going on. One photo of the town for now - more later.

The town of Cittadella, with its church, campanile, ancient wall, and nearby mountains.