“Sunset in the Dolomites.”

Image Credit: Photograph by Adrian Petrisor
Tre Cime landscape
An incredible shot of the atmosphere and light at sunset in the Dolomite Mountains of Italy.
Source: Tre Cime Photo by Adrian Petrisor — National Geographic Your Shot

The Drinking Fountains of Rome.

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I love drinking fountains — especially the fact that they were installed in very old homes and public places before the advent of electricity. We all know modern fountains recirculate water with the aid of electric pumps, but how did these fountains of yesteryear operate?
Take the fountains of Rome, probably the most famous in the world.
In ancient times someone realized there were lots of water sources outside Rome that were at a higher elevation than the city itself. Ergo, if one could convey the water from the sources to the town, one would have water pressure (and if desired, fountains) galore.
One then had the mere technical detail of building ten miles of more or less watertight aqueduct with a constant slope of 1 in 320 using the resources available in 312 BC. Plus ten more aqueducts in later years, the longest extending 56 miles, bringing in a total of 38 million gallons of water per day.
Plus an elaborate municipal plumbing system in which the runoff from one fountain fed others downhill from it and ultimately wound up in the sewers.
Result: 1,200 fountains (and 800 baths) that couldn’t be shut off.
The Roman public’s familiarity with the aqueduct system as an integral piece of the city’s history increases their awareness of their water supply in general.
“Unlike most other cities in the world, Rome really flaunts the fact that it has water. There’s a fountain on every third corner, there are little drinking fountains, and much of it is always flowing because it’s a gravity system so it doesn’t turn off.”
The idea, which comes from ancient Rome, is that that the public always have first dibs on the water. They know where their water comes from, how it gets to them, and where it goes.
And so they should.

Hanging Out in the Dolomites.

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The International Highline Meeting in Monte Piana, near Misurina, Italy. Balazs Mohai/epa/Corbis

Festival goers talk about the emotional comedown after tent and wellies are packed away for another year, but at the Highline festival in the Italian Dolomites, it’s a more physical thing. The festival celebrates the extreme sport of slacklining (not to be confused with tightrope-walking) and attendees (slackers) spend their time living – and sleeping – on ropes slung hundreds of metres up in the air.

More trivial pursuits include yoga, music jams and film screenings. It’s held in September.

via World view: the festival in the Italian Dolomites where it’s cool to just hang | Travel | The Guardian.

‘Hallucinations of Ecstasy.’

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100 hallucinations of ecstasy’ is a brilliant illustration series created by Italian artist Davide Barca as part of the 1hundredthings project.
As it says on the tin, the series sets out to visually explore the exoteric concepts of Ecstasy – a psychic state of suspension and mystical elevation of mind – and Hallucination – a false sensory perception experienced in the absence of a real external stimulus.
His (quite literally) mind-boggling body of work consists of 100 visions filtered through a prism at the same time psychedelic, mystical, decorative, primitive and sacred, creating a fantastical and twisted iconography with no social and cultural limits.
A wealth of subjects such as animals, objects, heroes, demons, totems, saints, martyrs, women, gods, angels, trees and plants burst with an explosion of colours as if they were the epiphany of the unity of all things.

Davide Barca – aka Iraqi – is a multi-talented Italian artist born in 1980. Illustrator, painter, ghost poet, singer and performer. His work has been published in several indie magazines amongst which the iconic illustration magazine Frigidaire. Felt-tip pen addicted, he is currently involved in the Full Vacuum project, a fusion of experimental music, live drawing, philosophy and theatre.
Make sure you visit Davide’s website and check out more of his amazing work.
http://bit.ly/1n4rEIl
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via 100 hallucinations of ecstasy by Davide Barca.

The Portraits of Moroni.

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Gian Girolamo Albani, c1570 by Giovanni Battista Moroni. Photograph: Private collection
Sixteenth-century Italian portraitist Giovanni Battista Moroni spent most of his 30-year career painting the people around him in Bergamo.
His paintings, are alive with human presence.
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Young Lady, c1560-65. Photograph: Private collection
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The Tailor, 1565-70. Photograph: © The National Gallery, London
See more Images via Giovanni Battista Moroni at the Royal Academy – in pictures | Art and design | The Guardian.

“Fracastoro the Syphilis Poet” by Titian.

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Original Painting of Fracastoro by Titian.
A notorious 16th-century Italian’s portrait was acquired by the National Gallery in London in 1924.
His name? Girolamo Fracastoro. His claim to fame?
A word for the sexually transmitted disease that was terrifying his countrymen—syphilis—was derived from a poem he wrote.
The portrait was damaged, darkened by varnish, and unsigned, so the museum staff relegated it to a basement gallery despite Fracastoro’s renown.
Eventually, cleaning and conservation revealed the hand of a master artist.
After close examination, curators decided last year that the artist must be the famed Venetian painter known as Titian.
The portrait now hangs in one of the museum’s main galleries.
via Rediscovered Treasures