2012 Summer Gabrielle Smarr Temple Rome

Villa Deste, ladies and gentlemen.

This villa was an interesting stop in our Roman semester. I don’t really ever remember learning about it before, but its gardens are incredible. The inside is pretty amazing as well, but the gardens…top notch. We entered the villa in a courtyard area. It reminded me a lot of an area that was in a museum..though I can’t remember which one…again with Dr. Kline. In the museum, we were in a reconstructed Roman courtyard and it was one of the coolest things I remember about the museum trips. The museum was much darker than this courtyard, but still pretty cool. The real courtyard has a fountain that was our first stop in the lecture. The fountain was something that I liked. It was really pretty and carved into an arch with the water running into a basin at the bottom. All of the apples but a few had worn off the gold casing that once existed, but the fountain was still very elegant. We were all in this courtyard squished around this fountain when I looked up and saw this gem of an expression.

The man was concentrating so hard on what our teacher was saying, I had to capture it. I think that weird facial expressions are one of my favorite parts of photography. Maybe one day I’ll have a show just on facial expressions. One day we were in Connecticut checking out some national… or state… I don’t really remember…parks and we stumbled upon this nifty little side antique type store. I bought a photography book that was all weird baby portraits with word bubbles on it. That’s what this guy reminded me off, so I spent the time next to this fountain, instead of hearing the important parts of the lecture, making up lines that would go with his face. Most of our lectures I tend to lose concentration almost immediately which is unfortunate, but I move into creating things in my own head. Unfortunately a lot of the things I see in Rome blend into other so it seems like you see one, you’ve seen them all. Also, sometimes when I thread off on one detail to the next, I lead into a whole mess of things that seem a lot like ramble. If it’s annoying, you could skip those parts. Anyway, The fountain was nice. The inside of the villa was interesting as well. A lot of paintings on the walls and ceilings. We also found carvings in the wall of people signing their names and dates. There were some from 1806. Cool beans, right? The paintings in the building were later recognized in other places that we visited, lending to the idea that you’ve seen one cool painted house and ceilings, you’ve seen them all.

The gardens though…the gardens are what really grabbed me. They were amazing. So big and it had so many incredible fountains. There was one large one that I failed to capture. Too many photo hungry models in front of it and picky me, I didn’t want them in my shot. Some of the fountains that were my favorite were lined up along a long walkway. They were some odd creature monkey type forms and they were spewing water from their mouths in to a long basin all along the pathway.

There were also two ends of the garden where you could look out over a few pools with gigantic fish in them. We visited the top first where you can look down and see the powerful fountains all around. There’s also a fountain at the top that is a water organ and played for us at 2:30 on the dot. It was an interesting experience.

I think I liked the bottom view better than the top. It was shaded by a big old tree and you could see the huge fish in the ponds. Not to meantion there was a cat down there loving up on all the attention he was getting from the students in our class. The professor didn’t stand a chance at lecturing when there was a cat around. Cat or gardens..I mean..who would choose gardens? Kidding. But I do like cats as well.

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