This and That

Random bits of my life

Posts Tagged ‘gothic’

Brno Architecture

Posted by Avital Pinnick on August 28, 2017

Central nave of St. James’s Church, a late Gothic (13th century) structure. One advantage of a mirrorless camera is that it’s small and can be operated soundlessly. Because there were no other tourists around, I wouldn’t have felt comfortable photographing this interior with a big DSLR.

St. James's Church, Brno

Exterior of St. James’s Church.

St. James's Church, Brno

Detail of House of the Lords of Lipá, an extremely ornate 16th-century Renaissance building (the sgraffito facade is actually 19th century), now a shopping center.


Cool building decorations in central Brno.




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Munich Architecture

Posted by Avital Pinnick on July 27, 2017

Munich architecture is a very interesting mix of styles. This colourful glass wall (“Bühnenfenster,” an installation by Olafur Eliasson, of Narima glass, by Schott) is the back of the Bavarian State Opera’s rehearsal hall.

Rehearsal Hall of Bavarian State Opera

The Max Planck Society, a research center, has a very cool interlocking stone sculpture flanking its main entrance.

ax-Planck-Gesellschaft, Generalverwaltung, Munich

Across the the street from the Max Planck Society is the Bavarian State Chancery, which was destroyed during WWII and rebuilt in steel and glass. It’s so wide that I would have needed an extreme wide angle lens to photograph the entire building, so you’ll have to settle for the middle section.

Bayerische Staatskanzlei (Bavarian State Chancery), Munich

The New City Hall (Neues Rathaus) from the outside, below the tower. Our guide told us that the glockenspiel performance isn’t worth organizing your schedule around, but if you happen to be passing through Marienplatz just before 5 p.m., you might as well hang around for a few minutes to watch the mechanical jousting knights.

Neues Rathaus, Munich

Courtyard of the new city hall, in typical neo-Gothic style.


Highly decorated oriel windows in the courtyard of the new city hall.


Accordionist playing in what we would have assumed was a beer garden. Our guide told us that to be considered a beer garden (a place where you are welcome to bring your own food as long as you purchase the drinks), it has to be a permanent set-up. Since the tables and umbrellas are only out in good weather, apparently it’s not a true beer garden. The accordionist let out a yelp after each song so that people would notice and applaud.


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St. Vitus Cathedral

Posted by Avital Pinnick on November 21, 2013


St. Vitus Cathedral, located in the Prague Castle complex, could be called the Altneu cathedral. Although it was founded in 1344, much of the building was constructed later. The neo-gothic facade (above) was designed around the turn of the 20th century by Josef Mocker and finished in the 1950s. Construction was rather slow for 600 years. The St. Wenceslas Jubilee in 1929 provided the final push in the 1920s. The entire western half (i.e., the entrance, above) of the cathedral is neo-Gothic (Victorian period), but the elements blend together well. The cathedral is the largest church in the country (124 x 60 meters) and contains the tombs of many Bohemian kings and Holy Roman Emperors. The photo above doesn’t really do it justice. The courtyard in front of the cathedral is rather small, so I had to use a wide angle lens and stand directly in front.

View of the nave, looking towards the west. The rose window, which doesn’t show up very well in this photo, was designed by Frantisek Kysela in 1925-27.


View towards the eastern end of the nave, taken in the transcept.


Peter Parler’s splendid net vaults were possibly inspired by English Gothic architecture. Parler was the master builder who took over construction in 1352, when he was only 23 years old. The vault style is characterized by the doubled diagonal ribs and are not merely decorative. They provide additional support for the ceiling. (I took this photo with a wide angle lens in the transcept, looking straight up. That always makes me a bit dizzy.)


Southern portal, also called the Golden Gate, because of the gold mosaic of the Last Judgment.


South portal,  showing the Last Judgement mosaic, below the windows of the St. Wenceslas chapel. Kings entered through this doorway for coronation in the chapel.


Last Judgment mosaic


Gilded ironwork on south side.


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