domenica, agosto 26, 2007

The Red Dragon takes a field trip

We went to Liège this weekend to see what we could see. It's a neat city which somehow made me think of a blend of Liverpool and Italy, by which I mean it was pretty, dirty, seedy and surprisingly cosmopolitan. We liked it. One super-neato thing was the Musée d'art religieux et d'art mosan, which contained all the paintings and sculptures from monasteries and churches that had shut down in the area of the Meuse valley. It's one of those really cluttered museums - they just have so much stuff in it. One standout was a Virgin and Child from 1070 that looked like a dreamworld archetype. The Christian fixation on the mother/child image must be confusing to everybody else in the world but I bet it really helps us proselytize.

One of the attendants showed us around a bit to give us more historical depth on stuff, that was nice. It left me with the impression Liège is a really fucked up place - a sort of heaving commie stew - very North and South, except it was like the North that happened to be the South instead. Belgium's Manchester, in a word. And of course I like that.

Another nice thing about Liège was its geography. It's on a very nice river, and it's also at the beginning of the Ardennes so it's refreshingly hilly. That was welcome yesterday because I was as crampy as a moron who'd eaten a turkey dinner just before swimming the Channel, and climbing stairs really helps with that. And Liège has the mother of all staircases:

4 commenti:

Baywatch ha detto...

thoroughly Gorgeous.

Melbine ha detto...

I love cluttered museums..you know, most museums don't even disply 50% of their collection so I like seeing lots of stuff out.

I'm instantly tired looking at your picture of the stairs. I'm starting to huff and puff going up and down our 2 flights! What a great picture though.

Sugarplum ha detto...

Wow. The villagers must have the most amazing legs and asses! No need to go looking for workouts on treadmills and stairclimbers in that town!

Mistress La Spliffe ha detto...

I didn't take the picture, Baywatch, but I walked the steps. And you're right, Sugar; there was only one definitely local woman we saw on the steps, and I know she was local because she was carrying bits of a new computer up them. While we stopped and started and admired the view on one trip up, she went up twice, carrying heavy shit. And she looked GOOD.

I like the cluttered places too, Mel, and according to the nice man who showed us around they also had half the stuff again in storage. They're moving to a new, bigger spot this year sometime and even that won't accomodate the full collection - which keeps growing, as churches and monasteries in the region keep shutting.