Variations on a Theme: Portuguese Tiles in Aveiro

Infinite Patterns

Beautiful hand-painted decorative tiles cover the interior and exterior of  many buildings in Portugal, the most famous works found churches, palaces, schools, and train stations. Patterned ceramic tiles were introduced to Spain and Portugal by the Moors in the 13th century. Known as azulejos, the painted tin-glazed ceramic tiles were used for both artistic and utilitarian purposes. At the height of  azulejo popularity in Portugal, blue and white figured tiles covered flat surfaces with scenes of Portuguese history, cupids hanging from vines, historical figures, the lives of the saints, or architectural and floral elements. But not all of tile surfaces were so grand. Walk down any street in Aveiro and be amazed by the infinite number of tile patterns used purely for surface decoration, patterns that go on into infinity.

In the mid-19th century, Brazilian immigrants introduced industrialized tile production. As the Portuguese adopted the Brazilian fashion of decorating the facades of businesses and houses, Lisbon factories began using transfer-print methods to produce large quantities of blue-and-white or polychrome patterned azulejos.  As I walked through Aveiro last week, I tried to find two facades with matching tiles—No such luck. I’m not sure of the age of the tiles in the gallery. Most appear to be transfer-prints, but one or two may be hand-painted.

 

 

Color Your World 2018: 120 Days of Crayola – Gold

Gold

Royal Palace of Madrid, Palacio Real de Madrid, Madrid, Spain

Ceiling and window decoration over one of the grand stairways of the Royal Palace of Madrid. While the palace is officially the home of the Spanish royal family, it is currently only used for state occasions. Construction of the palace began in 1738 and was completed in 1755, though later renovations and expansion were undertaken. The palace, the largest royal palace in Europe by floor area, has 3,418 rooms and 1,450,000 sq ft of floor space.

Join Jennifer’s Color Your World 2018: 120 Days of Crayola, a 4 month (January 1, 2018 to April 30, 2018) blogging challenge event. Each day has a new color theme based on a past or current crayon color in Crayola’s box of 120 crayons.

WPC and Thursday’s Special: 2017 Photos

2017 Retrospective

 

I track my year and my travels by the photos I post. Generally, I try to use recent photos for each new post or challenge. These are some of my favorites from 2017, which took me to Cuba, Spain, Alaska, South Dakota, New York, the Grand Canyon in Arizona, Egypt, France, and Switzerland. It was a very good year.

Join  WPC: 2017 Favorites and Paula’s Thursday’s Special: Best Photo of 2017

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