Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Report from Germany: Frankfurt, Munich and an antique embroidery

You know how I and many other quilters like to make reproduction quilts…well in Germany, they have reproduction buildings!

On this major-square in Frankfurt, these half timbered buildings have been rebuilt to replace the buildings destroyed in WWII-using pre-war photos to exactly reproduce the buildings.

In Munich, we went to the Residence-also a reproduction building!The Residence was the palace home of the Dukes of Bavaria. They were later called the Electors and then the Kings of Bavaria. They were called the Electors as they were part of the select 7 who elected the Emperors of the Holy Roman Empire.Did you know that the Holy Romany Empire continued until the 18th century? I didn’t-I thought it ended with the Fall of Constantinople in the 15th century-apparently not. Only the Eastern Holy Roman Empire ended then the Western continued until Napolean. (I’m learning quite a lot of history on this trip…I really only know American and British history!)

This is a photo of the building from one of the interior courtyards-it is trompe l’oeil–click on the photo and you will see that all of the shadows recreating the look of a stone exterior are painted on a simple stucco exterior.

The Residence is chock full of wonderful reproduction rooms…rooms with Rococo wall and ceiling plasterwork, rooms with painted wooden ceilings and rooms with brocaded walls…I think I am more impressed that this is reproduction work being done today than if these were 17-18th century rooms! What a wonderful job! Unfortunately, no flash was allowed and none of my photos came out.

The Residence also has a wonderful Treasury full of the crowns and jewels of the Bavarian Dukes/Electors/Kings. From the 13th century, there is a wonderful crown and a jeweled necklace, both with semi-precious stones the size of eggs!

We also went to the Bavarian National Museum-this building is partially original and partially reconstructed-and used to house the King’s wonderful collections-sort of an overflow repository for the treasures he just didn’t have room for in the Residence! There’s a whole silver state dinner service including plates, servers and silverware…made me feel better-it, like my silver, needs polishing!, a wonderful display of Meissen porcelain figurines-showing both painted and white (pre over painting) examples of the same figurines!, and down in the basement wonderful rooms filled with painted Bavarian furniture (a complete bedroom set for one) and local redware pottery that looks so like the painted furniture and Redware from Pennsylvania!

Some wonderful embroidery pieces-this is one of two couples that are the center design of this “courtly love” 14-15th century Bavarian embroidery.

Posted by PicasaIt was very dark in this room and I, of course, didn’t use a flash-wow! the wonders of digital manipulation!)


Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

what wonderful old buildings. You are so lucky to be touring through Germany - there is so much history there. I recognize some of what you are talking about with history, I love reading history and did well in history classes in school - but I do not memorize facts well and tend to forget after I would cram for the tests! Now it it is like I remember that - but not details!

Eileen said...

This was such a wonderful tour. Loved the old buildings. and your pictures still turned out pretty good considering. Lovely embroidery piece.

Elaine/Muddling Through said...

Miri, thanks for including up all on your trip. I love seeing and learning! I've missed your posting, but I'm glad you're having a good time and learning, too!

Bea said...

Wow, those buildings are beautiful. I'm so glad somebody decided to put the money into reproducing them. Thanks for the tour. What a wonderful trip you all had. :)Bea

Barb said...

Those building are awesome!! Glad you are having a good time and look forward to more picture.

Susan said...

Hello Miri. You are on my dream trip so I will enjoy the sites through you here at home. I have so much to catch up on.

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