St. Mary’s in Torun

Whenever I visit Torun, I mainly concentrate on St. Mary’s church…

It is hypnotic.

I do not treat it as a church from today’s perspective. I am amazed by its strong medieval message. We truly are dominated by the grandeur of the interior, and forced to look up. Today by looking UP – we mean looking at the splendid vaulted ceilings. But for a medieval man, it was looking farther, beyond. The ceiling of the church was Heaven itself, the site of God. In the middle ages with the very strong religiousness, it was an extremely important ideological message…

The construction of Torun’s St. Mary’s church started in … 1343. The same year as St. Mary’s Church in Gdansk, and was completed at the end of the century.

HERE is a short video of the church and here ANOTHER one… And ANOTHER

To feel the atmosphere and to inhale the ages of history – you must come to Torun 🙂

Magic Amber – The Magic of Amber

For years I have been fascinated by amber…

I design my amber jewelry myself. It all is being made by a very skilled Friend of mine – so I have a unique collection of marvelous items… Maybe this helps me understand the phenomenon of the Golden Teardrops of Sun.

The Magic Stone of the Baltic… Burning Stone. Gold of the Baltic. Those are some of the names that are still used to describe it…

Here is a LINK to the information on amber, as well as to the PHOTOS

But to best understand the magic of it – you have to touch it, wear it, possess it 🙂

Amber Contexts in Malbork Castle

What a shame I didn’t bring my camera with me today!!!

I sprang out from home, to late to think about anything. I overslept, and having quite a drive from Gdansk to Malbork to meet the group I was to guide, I rushed without thinking of anything besides to BE ON TIME…

The road was nearly empty – most of the citizens were in a frenzy of pre-Christmas shopping, probably crowding in some malls…

So, as always – I was much earlier and had some time for myself in the Castle. Therefore I went into the Middle Castle to the basement of the east wing, to see the newly arranged Amber Contexts Exhibition (if the text shows in Polish – just click the EN button on the top right side and it should be visible in English, or refresh the website)

Well, I am known for being a fault-finding person as far as the level of museums in Poland is concerned. And I am known for seldom going into raptures.

But this time I did…

I gasped with admiration. As the young generation would say – my jaw dropped with exaltation.

The exhibition is wonderful. AT LAST it shows the history of this Golden Teardrop of the Sun, as I call Amber.

(BTW – this is how I called Amber several years ago, and now everyone picked that phrase and it lives own life 😉 ).

Coming back to the exhibition – the darkness of the place, and the soft music, together with the detailed yet – interesting way of presentation – makes it AN EVENT. It is a pity that it was not that much voiced, as it should be. (It seems that Poland still does not know how to be proud of herself, and how to show her successes and heritage…)

Among the exhibits – besides the absolutely ravishing chest made by Christoph Maucher, there is the famous Great Amber Goblet. It comes from the collections of the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery in Glasgow. It once belonged to Dr. William Hunter, the founder of this oldest museum in Scotland. The goblet was  subjected to preservation in the workshop of the Malbork Museum. It is simply … wonderful.

( BTW – I am thrilled – as I am going to visit the Hunterian Museum early next year 🙂 )

http://www.zamek.malbork.pl/index.php?p=wydarzenia&aid=70 – picture from the official website of the Castle Museum.

So, whoever is planning to come to Gdansk (North Poland) – MALBORK (abt. 1,5 hrs drive south east) is an absolute MUST SEE 🙂

Not only because it is the biggest heap of bricks in the world, but also because it has the richest and most interesting (at least in Poland) Amber exhibition.

🙂