Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Prague. Baroque "Signage"

One of the more charming detail of the buildings in Prague is the way they announce their purpose or heritage.  This is usually done by some ornamental sign at the top.  In Secession houses, the sign (if there) might include the date of the building or the architect.  In the Baroque houses, especially those that line Neruda Street, coming down from the castle to the river in Mala Strana, or in the Old Town (Stare Mesto) Square, the signs are visual icons.  In some cases their meaning is clear.  The  above sign, for example, marks the House of the the Three Fiddles, which was once owned by a master violin maker.  In others, the meaning is sometimes less clear.  Also present in this premiere spot on the facade, just above the door, are religious paintings or icons, sculpted animals, or images whose meaning is hard to decode.  It is just one more detail in the very detailed landscape of the city--one more ornament, one more spot for darting eyes to land.



Susan Griffin said...

Have to love the ostriches.

Caree Risover said...

Super shots and explanation. To see a building fully, it is so important to look upwards. Thank you for reminding me.

Debra Journet said...

Yes, when I was in Timisoara Romania, which used to be part of Hungary and was where I first discovered my fascination with architecture, I quickly realized much of the interesting stuff was going on up top. I would basically stop in the street. People would ask me "what are you looking at?" It was as if invisible to most of the people who lived there.