As visual creatures, we’ve been attracted to light for thousands of years. From the first fires to the summer sunshine, from ceremonial candlelight to the dazzle of diamonds, we love light.
So for this week’s photo challenge I decided to look at some of the lights twinkling in Venice over the last few months.
The Murano glass chandeliers in Venice are truly spectacular and can take weeks to put together (never mind keeping them clean!!). This one can be found on the main piano nobile (first floor) of Ca’ Sagredo, a 15th century Grand Canal palazzo built by the Morosini family and later bought by the Sagredos, one of the most prestigious Venetian families. The palazzo has recently been converted into a 5 star hotel so you too can live like a noble for a night or two!
The view from the Accademia bridge crossing the Grand Canal is one of my all-time favourites and has been painted by countless artists down through the years including Canaletto, Guardi and Monet. As the sun sets, the city lights up and the canal becomes a mirror bouncing reflections around to great effect. I could gaze at this view of the Grand Canal and the Church of the Madonna della Salute for hours!
Gondolas are synonymous with Venice and can be found along many of the canals around the city. Some gondola stations are bigger than others but all are trying to attract customers, just like this one with its sparkling fairy lights in front of the Doge’s Palace near St Mark’s Square.
St Mark’s Basilica is a glistening mosaic of gold, but the lights inside are kept low most of the time so in some corners of the church the only glow comes from candles like these lit in prayer or remembrance perhaps.
The Christmas lights in Venice are subtle and very classy, using nets of tiny pinpoints of light to decorate the colonnades of St Mark’s Square, including in front of the famous Florian Cafe, and some of the busier shopping streets. The effect is really quite beautiful and looks like curtains of stars.
And the decorations at the Rialto are similarly restrained with tiny fairy lights illuminating the 16th century bridge connecting the St Marks and San Polo districts. From a distance it almost looks like tiny icicles hanging from the bridge and the effect is gorgeous without going over the top!
So there you have it! As the winter months draw in and the sunlight dims towards the shortest day in just over a week, artificial lights bring life back to the darkest corners of the city. Light creates a magical atmosphere as pools of brightness punctuate the mysterious blackness. If you like these photos have a look at more via the Weekly Photo category in the menu to your right. And don’t forget to leave me a comment to tell me what the word twinkle suggests to you?! Ciao for now!