Tag Archives: architecture



en2 St. Charles’s Church or Karlskirche (German) is a marvelous church I visited while touring Karlsplatz, Vienna. With dark rich wood, gilded lines, frames and flowers, and soaring marble columns all wrapped in warm sunlight pouring in through deliberately placed windows, the church exemplifies the majesty that is baroque architecture. Fittingly dedicated to St. Charles Borromeo and begun by Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI, the glorious building serves almost as a testament to the saint’s association with the Counter-Reformation (a 16th and 17th century movement aimed at bringing protestants back into the Catholic fold with an emphasis on rich theological and architectural traditions). In a theatre of agony and triumph, powerful imagery inevitably leads one to consider one’s insignificance in the grand scheme of things: no doubt one of its principle purposes.

Even from outside, one is drawn from far and wide but the large dome that sits atop a tower betwixt two pillars carved from top to bottom with religious references. Its facade is rich with diverse elements. You can readily identify the Greek temple-inspired portico and the adjoining baroque towers. Two angelic beings carrying instruments of the Passion loom over pedestrians on their way to the front steps where saintly figures dot the roofing high above.

The church was undergoing renovations, so there was an elevator that workmen used to access the lattice hoisted beneath the ceilings for cleaning the paintings. I was able to see the beautiful works up close and then had a wonderful view of the city from the rooftop. Decorating the inside of the cupola is an image of the Holy Spirit descending as a bird. Saint Charles Borromeo is seen interceding, the instruments of the Passion, and people fleeing the light of the Church and the Eucharist. You’ll also notice that along both walls in the nave, there are many chapels dedicated to various saints or biblical events. You’ll notice the Rising of Lazarus and what looks like Pentecost depicted in two of those I photographed.

es2 La iglesia de San Carlos (se refiere como “Karlskirche” en Aleman) es una iglesia maravillosa he visitado cuando mientras visitaba Karlsplatz, Vienna. Hay oscura madera rica, flores y marcos dorados, y altas columnas de mármol, se cubren en luz de sol desde muchas ventanas especiales. Estos son unos de los elementos típicos de la grandeza que es el estilo barroco.
La iglesia se dedica a San Carlos Borromeo y su contrucción se empezó por Sacro Emperador Romano Carlos VI. San Carlos se conoce por su influencia en la Contrarreforma, un movimiento católico en siglo 16 y 17 contra los conquistas protestantes en Europa. El movimento utilizó las tradicciones ricas en teologia y arquitectura importancia. Cuando ves la exhibición de agonía y triumfo con las imágenes poderosas, considerarás tu insignificancia. Este es quizás uno de sus propósitos.

Cuando afuera, puedes a ver el domo desde muy lejos. El domo está entre dos columnas que se cubren en escenas biblicas. La fachada tiene un pórtico como un templo griego y torres magnificas adyacentes. Dos ángeles altas tienen los instrumentos de la crucifixión y vigilan la entrada principal. Tambien, hay algunos santos encima el tejado.

La iglesia estaba en reformas y había un ascensor que los trabajadores utilizan para la limpieza de las pinturas. Tuve la oportunidad ver las hermosas obras cerca y entonces tenía una maravillosa vista de la ciudad desde la azotea. En el interior de la cúpula es una imagen del Espíritu Santo descendiendo como un pájaro. San Carlos Borromeo se ve en intercesión; los instrumentos de la Pasión, y unas personas huyen de la luz de la Igelisia y la Eucaristía. También te darás cuenta en las paredes largas de la iglesia, hay muchas capillas dedicadas a varios santos o eventos bíblicos. Se dará cuenta de la resurrección de Lázaro y lo que parece Pentecostés en dos de mis fotos.

Greenwich…my home for two weeks

Photos at bottom

London: First days

Getting adjusted to the change in time zones was not as easy as I had thought. I had slept on the plane, so I didn’t go sleep till later on in the day. Also, the sun rises at about 7 and sets at about 9, meaning my eyes wouldn’t be a good judge of when I should be sleeping, much less of when I wanted to sleep.

The main street around here (Deptford High Street) is lined with shops, restaurants, salons, and even a train station. A few days week, the road is blocked to vehicular traffic, and street vendors are allowed to set up shop on both sides near the sidewalks. I’ve seen everything being sold. I’ve never seen fish and meat sold out in the open before, laid on ice probably far away from the original slaughterhouse or fishing grounds. One of the first thing I noticed, both inside and outside shops, was that eggs aren’t sold from refrigerated racks like in America, and are sometimes plastic-wrapped and usually kept at room temperature on shelves. Even when the locals buy eggs, they keep them at room temperature. It has to be safe, I suppose, but I can’t understand why one environment would be mandated if the other is perfectly fine. I’ll have to do my research! Also, there will be more interesting British oddities ahead!

So far

So far I’ve been able to visit the local parish church of Church of England, St. Paul’s. It’s a stunning piece of architecture with a cemetery enveloped in rose bushes. The plaque near the door counsels visitors of the traditionalist Anglican (Episcopalian) belief that their church is a part of the One, Holy, Catholic Church mentioned in the Nicene Creed. Its claim to apostolic succession was argued against those Christian churches that deny any validity in their priestly orders (If you haven’t guessed, theology is one of my many loved subjects). It was really odd seeing that plaque as the first thing in the church.

Buildings in the city blend their older foundations (usually made from durable brick) with new modern one. Below, you can see a few quick shots of Deptford Station and the renovations they are making as a part of a national overhaul. The oldness of the city also makes uniformity impossible. The variance in colors, building material, and size make the place even more interesting. Returning to my hostel one evening, I was surprised to see that a part of Deptford High Street had been transformed into a movie set. One definitely doesn’t see that every day!

I don’t know why I took a picture of the sugar dish, but the large spout attached and talk of construction workers descending on the restaurant I ate lunch at for midday tea are probably hints that the discovery of many quirky customs awaits me!

More to come…

  • Crossing the street in London
  • Using public transportation in England.