This week… in lockdown (two)

If someone had told you last year that you would have weeks at home to do whatever you liked you would probably have been delighted. But it’s not at all easy being shut in your home. Of course, I’m disapointed to miss out on all the trips I had planned, exhibition previews and so on but it’s the face to face contact with family and friends that I miss the most. In a climate of fear and panic in the first week of lockdown, I found it difficult to concentrate on anything, at all. This week I seem to have made a major adjustment.

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This week… under lockdown (one)

If, like me, you enjoy snooping around great country houses, museums and galleries then social distancing needn’t stop you from exploring. Isn’t it true that as one door closes, another opens? While UK attractions are currently closed to the public many are opening their virtual doors. Now is the perfect time to take a personal tour of some of the best collections from the comfort of your armchair. Here’s a few of my top picks this week.

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Review: Andy Warhol at Tate Modern

Andy Warhol (1928 to 1987) was the son of immigrants, a shy gay man who became a leading figure in the visual art movement. Warhol was born in 1928 as Andrew Warhola to working class parents from present day Slovakia. In 1949 he moved from Pittsburgh to New York. Initially working as a successful commercial illustrator, his skill at transforming the imagery of American culture soon developed as ground-breaking pop art.

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Abbeys and cathedrals: intrigue, love and hubris

I’m not a church-goer although regular Sunday services were a part of my upbringing. I don’t know if it’s that familiarity between heritage churches and childhood, but I love the feeling of peace and contemplation in the soaring spires, graceful arches and supporting buttresses of these historic buildings. The stories of the people who built them and those who worshipped, remain in the exquisite architecture and dramatic frescoes. The very stones are imbued with history and all its attendant intrigue, love, ambition and power.

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A life of contemplation: Abbey of Santi Nazaro and Celso

It seems like every town and city in the Piemonte region of north west Italy features a magnificent historical building, or two. If, like me, you appreciate classical architecture, incredible gardens and exquisite frescoes this should be on your list of places to visit. This part of Italy is so different from the sunny climes further south and it has a distinctly Gothic atmosphere.

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