McGill University, Montreal, Quebec.
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Top two pictures: Avenue de l'Esplanade, Montreal, Quebec. Bottom two: Rua dos Bacalhoeiros, Lisbon, Portugal.
Posted by Brendan at Thursday, August 18, 2011
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
A crude miniature map of the holy city of Mecca appears on a single tile on the exterior of the Rüstem Pasa Mosque in Istanbul, camouflaged among the jumble of blue-and-white glazed tiles that decorate the front of the building. Click on the picture to see it bigger.
At the center of the map is the black, cube-shaped Kaaba building, the most important structure in the entire pilgrimage city of Mecca because it is believed to have been built by Abraham and his son Ishmael. Surrounding the Kaaba on the map are six tall minarets, a feature that clearly identified the mosque surrounding the Kaaba since it was the only one in the world with that many minarets - that is, until the Ottomans finished building the Sultan Ahmed Mosque in Istanbul in 1616 and surrounded it with six minarets as well. To distinguish the mosque of the Kaaba as still being the most important in the world, the Ottoman sultan sent his architect to Mecca the same year to construct a seventh minaret around the Kaaba, which means that this tiled map of the holy city likely dates to before the completion of the Sultan Ahmed Mosque in 1616.
Rüstem Pasa Mosque, Hasircilar Çarsisi, Istanbul, Turkey.
Posted by Brendan at Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Mont Royal Park, Montreal, Quebec.
Posted by Brendan at Sunday, August 14, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
Josef Gocar, and now houses an exhibition of cubist paintings from the Czech Republic.
Top two pictures: Celetná, Prague, Czech Republic. Bottom two: Na Perstyne, Prague, Czech Republic.
Posted by Brendan at Friday, August 12, 2011
Monday, August 8, 2011
Notre-Dame des Neiges Cemetery, Montreal, Quebec.
Posted by Brendan at Monday, August 08, 2011
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Posted by Brendan at Wednesday, August 03, 2011
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Posted by Brendan at Tuesday, August 02, 2011
Monday, August 1, 2011
horseshoe arches (a type of arch that curves inward at the bottom) are a curious decorative detail on the balconies of two side-by-side townhouses in Montreal, given the typical association of horseshoe arches with Islamic architecture. Rue Sainte-Famille, Montreal, Quebec.
Posted by Brendan at Monday, August 01, 2011
Saturday, July 30, 2011
quite a big thing now in the world of street art. There's even a wikipedia page. Proponents of yarn bombing claim to be softening and feminizing urban space with their work. At the very least, they're helping some street furniture stay warm. Top: Cechuv Bridge, Prague, Czech Republic. Bottom: Davis Square, Boston area, Massachusetts.
Posted by Brendan at Saturday, July 30, 2011
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Posted by Brendan at Thursday, July 28, 2011
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Posted by Brendan at Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Monday, July 25, 2011
There's a feature in the Boston Globe today about a group of phonographers from the New England Phonographers Union (who knew there was such a thing?) recording background noises from the Deer Island sewage treatment plan in order to make music from the ambient sounds. Their aim they say, was to bring these background sounds to the foreground, allowing people to hear these rhythmic processes that are otherwise ignored. "That's exactly why you would go out there to find beauty, because you would never expect to find it there."
Below, a video from the Boston Globe explaining the project:
Below, a video from the Boston Globe explaining the project:
Posted by Brendan at Monday, July 25, 2011
Sunday, July 24, 2011
Late-afternoon sunlight streams through tinted panes of glass in Montreal's Palais de Congrés casting colorful, elongated shadows on the gray stone floor of the building's lobby.
For a short time each afternoon, sunlight hits the building at the just right angle to pass through the colored-glass facade and back out through a transparent glass wall on another side of the building, creating a momentary spectacle of tinted shadows on an adjacent street.
Alternating facades of transparent and tinted glass envelope the Palais de Congrés. Rue de Bleury, Montreal, Quebec.
Posted by Brendan at Sunday, July 24, 2011
Friday, July 22, 2011
This squat column supports the corner of a building on Boston Avenue in Somerville, Massachusetts.
Round, two-story mortar-stacked stone columns blur into the facade of a building on Vernon Street in Framingham, Massachusetts.
Thursday, July 21, 2011
This wooden door blocks entry into the courtyard at the Old Town Hall in Bratislava, Slovakia. Notice how the pattern culminates in a four-pointed star right at the point where the three sections of the door come together in this door-within-a-double-door arrangement.
Here are two more patterned doors spotted side-by-side on Országház utca in Budapest, Hungary.
Posted by Brendan at Thursday, July 21, 2011
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Rather than putting a giant sign across the front facade of this slick building, the architect placed the sign for the Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Research Center behind glass, high up on the back wall of a tall conference room at the front of the building, where it won't distract from the clean lines of the building's design. Avenue des Pins, Montreal, Quebec.
Monday, July 18, 2011
I'd like to restart this blog with a new feature. From now on I'll be posting photographs that I've taken of details and curiosities, some intended and others unintended, that I find interesting on buildings or in urban environments. My hope is to encourage others to notice the details that give character to the built environments around us. Here's something that caught my eye recently in Montreal:
Green stains from long-gone oxidized copper lettering are ghostly evidence of this building's former function as a school, "Ecole Cherrier." Rue Cherrier, corner Saint-Hubert, Montreal, Quebec.