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    Entries in Byzantine Art (2)


    Photo tour of Constantinople, I mean, Istanbul

    For your viewing pleasure, I've uploaded some of the more interesting pictures I've taken along the way as I've walked all over Istanbul, searching for sites that would have existed in the early 8th century. I've only managed to write descriptions of about a third of them thus far. I'll keep plugging away at that in between rambles. Hopefully my processing ability will keep pace with my picture production, though really, who are we kidding?

    Go to the Gallery here.



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    I made a pilgrimage of sorts to Dumbarton Oaks yesterday, arguably the best center for Byzantine studies in the Western hemisphere. Although the library was closed for the weekend, the museum was open - as were the gardens, in full springtime bloom. A few hours of strolling through a millennium of Byzantine art, jewelry, sculpture, mosaics, and religious artifacts gave me a quick shot of reality-grounding. After so many months buried in books, seeing things that people had actually touched, worn, and used - albeit centuries ago - made the world I'm trying to bring back to life a bit more concrete.

    On the flight to DC, I was able to step back from the research and put some thought into the themes I want to develop, and how my characters will play into it. There's something about being in flight, between places, that frees my mind to float and find connections that I hadn't seen before. I could say that I should do it more often, but flying has become such an annoying process in this day and age that I can't really have any interest in subjecting myself to it any more than I have to.

    Happy Easter, folks - and Hag Sameach to my Jewish friends, too. Take care.