Monday, 21 May 2018

A Town in Decay: Kula


Kula is a town with 47.000 inhabitants. And the town is full with old buildings in various stages of decay.




I loved the many primitive door locks and doors.







There were still old type of shops like copper and iron smiths, truly a town stuck in time (except for the mobile phones and satellite dishes :)).




We were there on a Sunday so many shops were closed.



I love the texture that only time can give.




These are blankets. Made with cotton inside and then stitched by hand in intricate motives, again a craftsmanship not much done these days.



A lot of these houses are still lived in, you usually only tell because of the clean windows and curtains. The houses are protected and can not be demolished, however many of the owners can not afford restoration either. Selling the houses are also not much of an option as the would not bring more than 10.000$, which is not enough to buy a new house. So many were inhabited by old couples of which the children went to bigger cities.


My guess is that in about 20 years they'll all be empty, some were already, like this one where I could take a peek inside and discover its beautiful mantle piece.





My favorite were all the rustic doors, some were unfortunately replaced by modern metal ones.












Although this house below looks like it is skeletonized it was still occupied. These houses were plastered with a mixture of mud and  straw which was a great isolation against both heat and cold but once this coating falls off you can see the wood work under it.






I still have many more pictures to share so stay tuned :)

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Newly Listed: Mid-century Stool


Mid-century Stool, Geometric Chair Embroidered Stool Pouf Art Deco Style Metal Furniture by StarHomeStudio
Abstract Plaster Painting, Original Acrylic Art on Board by PaintingsByLinette
Big grey world punctured by a small orange leaf by GordanaPhoto
Art Print, abstract painting, modern art, contemporary fine art, fire island  by LinneaHeideGallery

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

The Story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves

Once upon a time, long, long ago a king and queen ruled over a distant land.  The queen was kind and lovely and all the people of the realm adored her.  The only sadness in the queen's life was that she wished for a child but did not have one.



One winter day, the queen was doing needle work while gazing out her ebony window at the new fallen snow.  A bird flew by the window startling the queen and she pricked her finger.  A single drop of blood fell on the snow outside her window.  As she looked at the blood on the snow she said to herself, "Oh, how I wish that I had a daughter that had skin as white as snow, lips as red as blood, and hair as black as ebony." 

Soon after that, the kind queen got her wish when she gave birth to a baby girl who had skin white as snow, lips red as blood, and hair black as ebony.  They named the baby princess Snow White, but sadly, the queen died after giving birth to Snow White.

Soon after, the king married a new woman who was beautiful, but as well proud and cruel.  She had studied dark magic and owned a magic mirror, of which she would daily ask,

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the fairest of them all?

Each time this question was asked, the mirror would give the same answer, "Thou, O Queen, art the fairest of all."  This pleased the queen greatly as she knew that her magical mirror could speak nothing but the truth.

One morning when the queen asked, "Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the fairest of them all?" she was shocked when it answered:


You, my queen, are fair; it is true.
But Snow White is even fairer than you.
The Queen flew into a jealous rage and ordered her huntsman to take Snow White into the woods to be killed.  She demanded that the huntsman return with Snow White's heart as proof.

The poor huntsman took Snow White into the forest, but found himself unable to kill the girl.  Instead, he let her go, and brought the queen the heart of a wild boar.

Snow White was now all alone in the great forest, and she did not know what to do.  The trees seemed to whisper to each other, scaring Snow White who began to run.  She ran over sharp stones and through thorns.  She ran as far as her feet could carry her, and just as evening was about to fall she saw a little house and went inside in order to rest.

Inside the house everything was small but tidy.  There was a little table with a tidy, white tablecloth and seven little plates.  Against the wall there were seven little beds, all in a row and covered with quilts.

Because she was so hungry Snow White ate a few vegetables and a little bread from each little plate and from each cup she drank a bit of milk. Afterward, because she was so tired, she lay down on one of the little beds and fell fast asleep.


After dark, the owners of the house returned home.  They were the seven dwarves who mined for gold in the mountains.  As soon as they arrived home, they saw that someone had been there -- for not everything was in the same order as they had left it.

The first one said, "Who has been sitting in my chair?"

The second one, "Who has been eating from my plate?"

The third one, "Who has been eating my bread?"

The fourth one, "Who has been eating my vegetables?"

The fifth one, "Who has been eating with my fork?"

The sixth one, "Who has been drinking from my cup?"

But the seventh one, looking at his bed, found Snow White lying there asleep.  The seven dwarves all came running up, and they cried out with amazement.  They fetched their seven candles and shone the light on Snow White.



"Oh good heaven! " they cried. "This child is beautiful!"

They were so happy that they did not wake her up, but let her continue to sleep in the bed.  The next morning Snow White woke up, and when she saw the seven dwarves she was frightened.  But they were friendly and asked, "What is your name?"

"My name is Snow White," she answered.

"How did you find your way to our house?" the dwarves asked further.

Then she told them that her stepmother had tried to kill her, that the huntsman had spared her life, and that she had run the entire day through the forest, finally stumbling upon their house.

The dwarves spoke with each other for awhile and then said, "If you will keep house for us, and cook, make beds, wash, sew, and knit, and keep everything clean and orderly, then you can stay with us, and you shall have everything that you want."

"Yes," said Snow White, "with all my heart."  For Snow White greatly enjoyed keeping a tidy home.



So Snow White lived happily with the dwarves.  Every morning they went into the mountains looking for gold, and in the evening when they came back home Snow White had their meal ready and their house tidy.  During the day the girl was alone, except for the small animals of the forest that she often played with.

Now the queen, believing that she had eaten Snow White's heart, could only think that she was again the first and the most beautiful woman of all.  She stepped before her mirror and said:

Mirror, mirror, on the wall,
Who in this land is fairest of all?

It answered:

You, my queen, are fair; it is true.
But Snow White, beyond the mountains
With the seven dwarves,
Is still a thousand times fairer than you.



This startled the queen, for she knew that the mirror did not lie, and she realized that the huntsman had deceived her and that Snow White was still alive.  Then she thought, and thought again, how she could rid herself of Snow White -- for as long as she was not the most beautiful woman in the entire land her jealousy would give her no rest.

At last she thought of something.  She went into her most secret room -- no one else was allowed inside -- and she made a poisoned apple.  From the outside it was beautiful, and anyone who saw it would want it.  But anyone who might eat a little piece of it would die.  Coloring her face, she disguised herself as an old peddler woman, so that no one would recognize her, traveled to the dwarves house and knocked on the door.

Snow White put her head out of the window, and said, "I must not let anyone in; the seven dwarves have forbidden me to do so."

"That is all right with me," answered the peddler woman. "I'll easily get rid of my apples.  Here, I'll give you one of them."

"No," said Snow White, "I cannot accept anything from strangers."

"Are you afraid of poison?" asked the old woman. "Look, I'll cut the apple in two.  You eat half and I shall eat half."

Now the apple had been so artfully made that only the one half was poisoned.  Snow White longed for the beautiful apple, and when she saw that the peddler woman was eating part of it she could no longer resist, and she stuck her hand out and took the poisoned half.  She barely had a bite in her mouth when she fell to the ground dead.

The queen looked at her with an evil stare, laughed loudly, and said, "White as snow, red as blood, black as ebony wood!  The dwarves shall never awaken you."

Back at home she asked her mirror:

Mirror, mirror, on the wall,
Who in this land is fairest of all?

It finally answered:

You, my queen, are fairest of all.

Then her cruel and jealous heart was at rest, as well as a cruel and jealous heart can be at rest.

When the dwarves came home that evening they found Snow White lying on the ground.  She was not breathing at all.  She was dead.  They lifted her up and looked at her longingly.  They talked to her, shook her and wept over her.  But nothing helped.  The dear child was dead, and she remained dead.  They laid her on a bed of straw, and all seven sat next to her and mourned for her and cried for three days.  They were going to bury her, but she still looked as fresh as a living person, and still had her beautiful red cheeks.

They said, "We cannot bury her in the black earth," and they had a transparent glass coffin made, so she could be seen from all sides.  They laid her inside, and with golden letters wrote on it her name, and that she was a princess.  Then they put the coffin outside on a mountain, and one of them always stayed with it and watched over her.  The animals too came and mourned for Snow White, first an owl, then a raven, and finally a dove.



Now it came to pass that a prince entered these woods and happened onto the dwarves' house, where he sought shelter for the night .  He saw the coffin on the mountain with beautiful Snow White in it, and he read what was written on it with golden letters.

Then he said to the dwarves, "Let me have the coffin.  I will give you anything you want for it."

But the dwarves answered, "We will not sell it for all the gold in the world."

Then he said, "Then give it to me, for I cannot live without being able to see Snow White.  I will honor her and respect her as my most cherished one."

As he thus spoke, the good dwarves felt pity for him and gave him the coffin.  The prince had his servants carry it away on their shoulders.  But then it happened that one of them stumbled on some brush, and this dislodged from Snow White's throat the piece of poisoned apple that she had bitten off.  Not long afterward she opened her eyes, lifted the lid from her coffin, sat up, and was alive again.

"Good heavens, where am I?" she cried out.

The prince said joyfully, "You are with me."  He told her what had happened, and then said, "I love you more than anything else in the world.  Come with me to my father's castle.  You shall become my wife."  Snow White loved him, and she went with him.  Their wedding was planned with great splendor and majesty.

Snow White's wicked step-mother was invited to the feast, and when she had arrayed herself in her most beautiful garments, she stood before her mirror, and said:

Mirror, mirror, on the wall,
Who in this land is fairest of all?

The mirror answered:
You, my queen, are fair; it is true.
But the young queen is a thousand times fairer than you.

Not knowing that this new queen was indeed her stepdaughter, she arrived at the wedding, and her heart filled with the deepest of dread when she realized the truth - the evil queen was banished from the land forever and the prince and Snow White lived happily ever after.

(Grimm's Fairy Tale version - translated by Margaret Hunt - language modernized a bit by Leanne Guenther)

All bags are available at Starbags, each is one of a kind :).

Friday, 11 May 2018

Newly Listed: Knitted Glass Necklace


Knitted Glass Necklace and Earrings Sand colored Necklace Natural Lace by StarDelights
Ocean photography, Beach home decor, Take off ocean, seashore, seagulls by VintageChicImages
Beach Photography, Seashell Neutral  Decor, Wall Art, Sea Shell & Sand Water by findingfocus
Sand Photography, beach photo wall art seashore print coastal photograph by CarolynCochrane

Monday, 7 May 2018

Newly Listed: Hand Knitted Pillow Cushion


Hand Knitted Pillow Cushion, Zero Waste Pillow, Eco Friendly, Couch Cushion, Global Textile by StarHomeStudio
Flower art print, macro photography, floral abstract art flower stamens, wall art picture by PhotographySpa
Autumn flower photography, Botanical decor, Nature photography, Rustic decor, Garden decor by AdamsJuliaPhoto
Nantasket Beach, Coastal Decor, Sunset Photography, Beach Cottage Decor, Fine Art Landscapes by JLMPHOTOGRAPHS

Friday, 4 May 2018

Back to other times: Aphrodisias


Aphrodisias was our second stop of our photography trip (see here our first stop).


Aphrodisias was a large area with amazing ruins. There was also an indoor museum with the more fragile pieces.


Aphrodisias was a small ancient Greek Hellenistic city in the historic Caria cultural region of western Anatolia, Turkey. It is located near the modern village of Geyre, about 100 km (62 mi) east/inland from the coast of the Aegean Sea, and 230 km (140 mi) southeast of İzmir.


Aphrodisias was named after Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, who had here her unique cult image, the Aphrodite of Aphrodisias. According to the Suda, a Byzantine encyclopedic compilation, before the city became known as Aphrodisias (c.3rd century BCE) it had three previous names: Lelégōn Pólis ("City of the Leleges"), Megálē Pólis  ("Great City"), and Ninóē .


Aphrodisias was the metropolis (provincial capital) of the region and Roman province of Caria.

White and blue grey Carian marble was extensively quarried from adjacent slopes in the Hellenistic and Roman periods, for building facades and sculptures. Marble sculptures and sculptors from Aphrodisias became famous in the Roman world. Many examples of statuary have been unearthed in Aphrodisias, and some representations of the Aphrodite of Aphrodisias also survive from other parts of the Roman world, as far afield as Pax Julia in Lusitania.


The city had notable schools for sculpture, as well as philosophy, remaining a centre of paganism until the end of the 5th century. The city was destroyed by earthquake in the early 7th century, and never recovered its former prosperity, being reduced to a small fortified settlement on the site of the ancient theatre. Around the same time, it was also renamed to Stauropolis ("city of the Cross") to remove pagan connotations, but already by the 8th century it was known as Caria after the region, which later gave rise to its modern Turkish name, Geyre.

The city was sacked again by the rebel Theodore Mankaphas in 1188, and then by the Seljuk Turks in 1197. It finally fell under Turkish control towards the end of the 13th century


 A monumental gateway, or tetrapylon, leads from the main north-south street of the town into a large forecourt in front of the Temple or Sanctuary of Aphrodite. The gateway was built ca. A.D. 200.




Attached to the gate I discovered this guy building a new home :)





The Temple of Aphrodite was a focal point of the town, but the character of the building was altered when it became a Christian basilica. The Aphrodisian sculptors became renowned and benefited from a plentiful supply of marble close at hand. The school of sculpture was very productive; much of their work can be seen around the site and in the museum. Many full-length statues were discovered in the region of the agora, and trial and unfinished pieces pointing to a true school are in evidence. Sarcophagi were recovered in various locations, most frequently decorated with designs consisting of garland and columns. Pilasters have been found showing what are described as "peopled scrolls" with figures of people, birds and animals entwined in acanthus leaves.







The stadium was used for athletic events until the theatre was badly damaged by a 7th-century earthquake, requiring part of the stadium to be converted for events previously staged in the theatre.

The stadium measures approximately 270 m (890 ft) by 60 m (200 ft). With 30 rows of seats on each side, and around each end, it would have had a maximum capacity for around 30,000 spectators. The track measures approximately 225 m (738 ft) by 30 m (98 ft).



As the stadium is considerably larger and structurally more extensive than even the stadium at the Sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi, it is probably one of the best preserved structures of its kind in the Mediterranean.





It was very windy and this poor grasshopper was struggling to stay where he was.















The bouleuterion (council house), or odeon, is centered on the north side of the North Agora. As it stands today, it consists of a semicircular auditorium fronted by a shallow stage structure about 46 m wide. The lower part of the auditorium survives intact, with nine rows of marble seats divided into five wedges by radial stairways. The seating of the upper part, amounting to an additional twelve rows, has collapsed together with its supporting vaults. The plan is an extremely open one, with numerous entrances at ground level and several stairways giving access to the upper rows of seats. A system of massive parallel buttresses shows that the building was originally vaulted. The auditorium would have been lighted by a series of tall, arched windows in the curved outer wall. Seating capacity can be estimated at about 1750. The available evidence indicates a construction date in the Antonine or early Severan period (late 2nd or early 3rd century AD).


The bouleuterion at Aphrodisias remained in this form until the early 5th century, when a municipal official had it adapted as a palaestra, recording his achievement in an inscription on the upper molding of the pulpitum (stage). Palaestra usually refers to a wrestling ground, but in the 5th century it could be used to describe a hall for lectures, performances, and various kinds of competitive displays, as suggested by a number of factional inscriptions carved on the seats. Numerous additional cuttings in the surviving seats, probably for poles supporting awnings, suggest that by this time the building had lost its roof. The orchestra was lowered and provided with a marble pavement, reused, perhaps, from the earlier phase.





The Sebasteion, or Augusteum, was jointly dedicated, according to a 1st-century inscription on its propylon, "To Aphrodite, the Divine Augusti and the People". A relief found in the ruins of the south portico represented a personification of the polis making sacrifice to the cult image of Aphrodite of Aphrodisias, venerated as promētōr, "foremother" or "ancestral mother". "Aphrodite represents the cosmic force that integrates imperial power with the power of local elites," a reader of Chariton romance has noted. This connection between the goddess and the imperial house was also a particularly politic one at the time, as the Gens Julia - the family of Julius Caesar, Octavian Augustus, and their immediate successors - claimed divine descent from Venus/Aphrodite.


The first formal excavations were undertaken in 1904-5, by a French railroad engineer, Paul Augustin Gaudin. Some of the architectural finds (mostly friezes, pilasters and capitals) he discovered at the site are now in the British Museum.

The most recent, ongoing excavations were begun by Kenan Erim under the aegis of New York University in 1962 and are currently led by Professor R. R. R. Smith (at Oxford University) and Professor Katharine Welch of the NYU Institute of Fine Arts. The findings reveal that the lavish building programme in the city's civic center was initiated and largely funded by one Gaius Julius Zoilus, a local who was a slave of Gaius Julius Caesar, set free by Octavian. When Zoilus returned as a freedman to his native city, endowed with prestige and rich rewards for his service, he shrewdly directed it to align with Octavian in his power struggle against Mark Antony. This ensured Octavian's lasting favor in the form of financial privileges that allowed the city to prosper.



In September 2014, drones weighing about 0.5 kg were used to 3D map the above-ground ruins of Aphrodisias. The data is being analysed by the Austrian Archaeological Institute in Vienna.

In March 2018, an ancient tomb has been unearthed in an area where illegal excavations were carried out. The tomb was taken to the Aphrodisias Museum (all information taken from Wikipedia).