Tomorrow we start work – the other 5 people coming for OC matters (see the link to OC’s website on this page.) Knowing that our base is in a hotel nearer the beach than the ABLA Guest House, I decided to go into Lisbon once again. At the railway station I looked through the city guide for tourists and was astounded at how many museums this city has. The choice was fairly easy: the museum nearest the railway terminus Cais do Sodres. It also was in the older district that had so many charms.
The Chiado Museum was exhibiting the work of Columbano, a Portuguese painter of renown in his day. His portraits have muted colours, obscured backgrounds that bring out face and hands of his sitters. Later, in the earlier 20th Century he painted facial expressions that spoke of inner turmoil, disdain, conflict or uncertainty. It was very interesting, despite the overall colourlessness.
The museum itself is worth the visit. Housed in a multi-storey former monastery, the entrance hall has high, beautiful arched-brick ceilings; the stairway and walkways to the exhibition areas float through this vast space, giving a closer view of those arches.
After lunch there, I walked further up the hill into squares I visited on Tuesday, but then down narrow streets that swooped down then up the next hill. Some houses were showing off fresh laundry to the sun, garments hanging on clothes lines fixed to the street wall; others were tiled from street level to eaves, goodness knows how old those tiles, but the graffiti was very new.
This was a goldmine for photographers. My camera is bulging with new pictures, but they’ll have to wait until I get home – the cable I need is there. Look out for them next month.
24 February, 2011