A trip around Europe should be one that’s punctuated by art. There is so much artistic history spread across this continent, that any holiday, whether it’s a six week tour or a long weekend city break, contains the chance to see something beautiful.
Today we’re taking a look at some of the most striking, and perhaps lesser known worse of art you could see as you travel.
Bus Stops in Abkhazia
In a small and only partially recognised republic on the shores of the Black Sea, stand the remains of a Soviet project to bring art to the people. They’re not held in museums: they’re by roadsides. They’re bus stops, constructed by Russia’s premier modern artist, and figurehead of its artistic heritage from his studio in Moscow, Zurab Tsereteli.
Taking inspiration from the Black Sea that’s always on the horizon in this region, these bus shelters take the sculptural form of shells and sea creatures. They’re decorated with brightly coloured mosaic pictures depicting scenes from medieval folk tales, connecting the people waiting for their bus not just with a bold, expressionistic artistic tradition but also with their own past.
These bus stops or shelters were the making of Tsereteli’s career, and remain standing as a fascinating monument to a particular time in this region’s history.
The Best Gallery in Paris
Paris is a city of art galleries, and if you’re in town you need to visit the best one. Not the Louvre. The most important gallery you have to visit in Paris (if you really must pick only one) is the Centre Georges Pompidou.
While the Louvre has a treasure trove of beautiful old masters and you should visit if you have the opportunity, the Pompidou Centre focuses on modern art, and it’s in the world of Modern Art that Paris really dominates. The permanent exhibitions can show you the whole history of art as it developed from literal attempts to depict the world around the artist to the emotion inflected representations of impressionism, and more modern guys at the form and conventions of the art world or meaning itself such as Duchamps ‘The Fountain’, a urinal originally exhibited alongside traditional artworks as a playful question about what constituted a work of art.
Space is also reserved in the gallery for art from developing nations, so in a single visit you can see art from across the world, from the history of the modern movement and in the temporary exhibitions, the very cutting edge of what’s coming next!