We saw a lot of impressive art, palaces, and more on our Europe trip in August. While most people would only notice the beauty, Elvera seemed to have a knack for pointing out strange/scary/embarrassing/surprising/disturbing artwork. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to share so I don't have to carry the burden alone of having seen some of these.
The first several are from Frederiksborg Castle. This being our 3rd castle in Denmark, we were already far too familiar with the idea that Danish royal children of the past were, as my mom would put it, often "hit by the ugly stick."
On first glance, this painting looked like just another run of the mill homely child. However, after looking a more closely I noticed that she did not have the body of a child. We read the background info and found out that this was the queen's "pet dwarf." DISTURBING on sooooooooo many levels.
In another display of excellent judgement, the same family encouraged their children to pose with totally 100% age-appropriate items. Also... is this kid balding?
I almost jumped when I noticed the guy below lurking behind the queen. No explanation was offered for this painting, but I really would have appreciated one. Queen's stalker? Murderer? Awkward relative?
Something I actually enjoyed was seeing the preferred hairstyle of medieval Danish kings. They were confident enough to grow one piece of hair long and do a cute little side braid.
Our first experience with questionable Danish art was at Rosenborg Castle. We probably saw 50 portraits of scary children.
I also thought this sculpture on the living room fireplace wasn't very inviting.
That's enough making fun of Denmark! It's Italy's turn. Our interesting tour of Naples' underground tunnels inexplicably ended in a creepy room filled with handmade crèches. European crèches/nativity scenes are often made up of entire villages and not just the Holy Family. I've never really understood this tradition, but that's the way it is.
Our tour guide seemed surprised that no one in the group stuck around to admire every display. Here was one of the "nicer" ones. The kid(?) on the right looks like he could be a Danish prince. #notacompliment
Just down the street, I walked right by this lovely display in a church window. I turned around, and found Elvera stopped in her tracks laughing her head off. We don't know what this is or what it means, but the legless men being consumed by flames was a nice touch. A bit graphic maybe.
It was unclear, but our best guess that this Pompeii fresco was of a snake eating an African. So many questions.
You know how going to Walmart makes you feel more attractive? Or maybe that's just me? ;)
Well, anyways, going to Monaco is the exact opposite. Everyone around you is rich, model-thin, attractive, and put together. That's why this statue in the Princess Grace Garden really caught me off guard.
Lastly, this painting in a Menton, France church was a surprise. I'll let you guess why.
In conclusion, we might not be mature enough to travel Europe. Because everything above caused a lot of laughter while other tourists looked confused about was so funny.