the good news and the bad news

17 11 2009

the good news is that i am still in rome since september and it is amazing every day.

the bad news is that my internet connection such that posts to the blog are nearly impossible.  loading is unbelievably slow at best and sometimes i get kicked off the net altogether and have start over. so, i’ve just given up for a while.  without being able to load images, it’s just not worth it.

if you want to see what i’m up to you can go through my photos on flickr by clicking on the photos at the right.  or you can always find me on facebook.  it’s not as good as a blog but at least i can get things up loaded.

the good news is that i will be leaving rome in about two weeks.

or is that the bad news?

in any case, i will be back-blogging to catch up to where i left off on my adventures.

until then, i’ll share one adventure.

this beautiful chaumet tiara was in a vernissage at christie’s here in rome.  it was mostly italian painting of the 17th – 20th centuries and a large collection of what francesco calls “real jewellery”.

it was held in a palazzo at the south end of piazza navona and there was more old money in attendance there than i had ever seen in my life.  people were dressed absolutely to kill, having their drivers drop them off at the door so that their shoes spent as little time as possible on the ground.  luckily, without a fur, i was pretty much invisible. our hostess (we were not personally invited but came on the invitation of others) was wearing the largest diamond i’d ever seen on a hand at 12.5 carats.

while most of the jewellery for sale was a gaudy, over-rich, name-dropping nightmare, by comparison this tiara was a paragon of humility and restraint.  it’s relatively low price a reflection of the current unpopularity of tiaras in top drawer social circles.  it almost makes it affordable for the rest of us to be princesses.  be sure to click on the enlargement button to see the delicacy of it’s craftsmanship.

if you want to know more about tiaras be sure to check out “crowning glories” from the boston museum of fine arts from several years ago.

there’s also a few really good books on the subject including “tiaras” by diana scarsbrick that was a companion to the exhibition.

tiaras will be worn” was a spin-off exhibition of work from contemporary jewellers inspired by the boston exhibition.  this touring exhibition started from velvet da vinci gallery in san francisco.

the victoria and albert museum has an astounding collection of tiaras in it’s jewellery area and mounted it’s own tiara exhibition in 2002 with the accompanying publication “tiaras: past and present“.

by the way, it took about ten minutes to load this image.