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Archive for June, 2012

A visit to Florence, in the Italian region of Tuscany and considered the birthplace of Renaissance, is definitely a must for the architecture traveller. The best and main sights of the city lies mostly on the north bank of the Arno River. Piazzale Michelangelo, from across the river, provides a sweeping view of the city’s historic centre.

Florence, Italy
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 29mm | 1/60s @ f/8 | ISO 200 | Tripod

Florence viewed from Piazzale Michelangelo
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 52mm | 1/60s @ f/8 | ISO 200 | Tripod

via del Monte all Croci
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 27mm | 1/20s @ f/8 | ISO 200 | Handheld

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The most famous bridge in Florence and also the oldest, Ponte Vecchio (old bridge) replaced a wooden bridge which had crossed the Arno River at this spot since Roman times. Rebuilt perhaps by Neri da Fioravante (or Taddeo Gaddi, according to Giorgio Vasari) in 1335-1345, the bridge was Florence’s first bridge across the Arno River and is the only surviving bridge from Florence’s medieval days (others were destroyed in World War II). The upper side of the bridge, known as the Vasariano Corridor, was designed by Vasari to link the Palazzo Vecchio and the Uffizi Gallery to the Pitti Palace. It is currently an art gallery.

Ponte Vecchio, viewed from Piazzale Michelangelo
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 135mm | 1/80s @ f/8 | ISO 200 | Tripod

Structural Design: closed-spandrel segmental stone arch bridge with three segmental arches – the main arch has a span of 30 meters and the two side arches each span 27 meters). The rise of the arches is between 3.5 and 4.4 meters and the span-to-rise ratio 5:1.
Width: 32 metres
Function: road bridge

The bridge is inhabited. In the 13th century, the sides of the bridge held food shops. But by the end of the 15th century the shops were assigned to goldsmiths and silversmiths. Presently, Ponte Vecchio is still lined with shops selling gold and silver jewelry. An opening midway across the bridge offers views of the river and shore.

Ponte Vecchio, East
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 82mm | 1/125s @ f/5.6 | ISO 200 | Handheld

Ponte Vecchio, Detail - East
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 95mm | 1/90s @ f/5.6 | ISO 200 | Handheld

Ponte Vecchio, West
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 44mm | 1/160s @ f/4.5 | ISO 200 | Handheld

Ponte Vecchio, Detail - West
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 48mm | 1/250s @ f/4.5 | ISO 200 | Handheld

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The Basilica of Saint Mary of the Flower (Florence Cathedral or The Duomo) is the main church of Florence. Construction began in 1296 and structurally completed in 1436.
Architectural style: Gothic-Renaissance
Design: Arnolfo di Cambio (1240-1300)
Dome: Filippo Brunelleschi (1377-1446)
Campanille: Giotto di Bondone (1266-1337)

Baptistery (1059-1128)
Architectural style: Florentine Romanesque

Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore, Florence
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 18mm | 1/60s @ f/4 | ISO 400 | Handheld

The Duomo detail 1
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 22mm | 1/250s @ f/3.8 | ISO 200 | Handheld

The basilica facade is faced with polychrome marble panels in various shades of green and pink bordered by white.
Architectural style:19th century Gothic Revival
Architect: Emilio De Fabris (1808-1883) The original facade design was by Giotto.
The Duomo detail 3
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 22mm | 1/750s @ f/4 | ISO 800 | Handheld

Piazza San Giovanni, Florence
Nikon 200 | 18-200mm VR @ 26mm | 1/60s @ f/4 | ISO 400 | Handheld

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