The monthly ArtSmart Roundtable brings together some of the best art-focused travel blogs to post on a common theme. This month we are discussing Folklore! Take a look at all the great stories at the bottom of the page.
Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo, “The Procession of the Trojan Horse in Troy”, 1773, National Gallery, London (Photo)
Whether it was reading through the Iliad and Odyssey in school or seeing Brad Pitt as Achilles, we all know about Troy. This mythical fortress city conjures up images of fierce battle, epic warriors, beautiful Helen herself, and of course, one of the greatest tricks of all time, the magnificent Trojan Horse. Sometimes its easy to lump Troy in with Atlantis, the island of the Minotaur, or the lands of the Amazons – just fantasy places that serve as a setting for Greek mythology. But what do we really know about Troy? Along the northwest coast of Turkey are the archaeological remains of a city with walls that just might have been great enough to hold back the Athenian army and Achilles himself.
This year, Veterans Day is particularly poignant as we commemorate the 100th Anniversary of World War I. While many of us recognize the startling images of World War II, the Great War from 1914-1918 remains a little more distant. To gain some new understanding on this centenary, here are four of the best destinations for discovering World War I history.
A poppy among the British and French graves from the Battle of the Somme at the High Wood Cemetery, France (Photo)
The ancient city of Pergamon, just outside modern Bergama, is not necessarily on the “tourist trail” in Turkey, so I made a special point to visit. From the garden behind my guesthouse, I shared a bottle of Raki with the other travelers and watched the fading sunset and twilight dance across the ancient ruins on the mountain above us. My mind wandered back and forth between imagining this once magnificent capitol city and contemplating the quiet, emptied ruins present today. That ancient Pergamon exists at all today in Bergama, Turkey is a wonder and a testament to its phenomenal and multi-layered history.
Part of the Temple of Trajan, Pergamon
The East Coast of the US has been blasted with some terribly cold weather the last two weeks. To warm up, I’ve been digging through my summer photos! I’ve noticed a nice handful of picture in the genre of “Flowers & Old Stones.” There is something really beautiful about juxtaposing the rich texture of archaeological remains and colorful flowers.
Everyone knows the beautiful Library of Celsus, part of the the ancient ruins of Ephesus in Turkey. Frequently on the cover of travel guides or prominently displayed in collections of evocative travel photos, everyone dreams of seeing this place someday. Well, at least it seems that way once you get to Ephesus… As I watched crowds hustled through the ruins, it only re-affirmed my love of slow travel. I had an amazing visit to the archaeological site and am really happy that I spent the entire day there.
Me, some dedicated travelers, and the Library of Celsus in Ephesus.