architectural curiosities

I usually don’t like posting low resolution images (for me: anything below 5MB) but this photo of the pulpit of Saint Hedwig’s parish church in Dobroszow, Poland was too good to pass up. Its corpulent cetacean form no doubt alludes to the Biblical tale of Jonah and the whale, and could have been a warning to rambling clerics to “say what needs to be said.”

House Of Penance #1 by Ian Bertram

House of Penance #1 (of 6)
Peter Tomasi (W), Ian Bertram (A/Cover), and Dave Stewart ©
On sale April 13
FC, 32 pages
The Winchester House—famous for its original owner’s bizarre compulsion to incorporate a multitude of architectural curiosities. But as the bereaved Sarah Winchester’s workers toil on stairways to nothing and doors to nowhere, a mysterious stranger arrives … and he could make Sarah’s demons all too real.
“Blending horror, history and fiction, House of Penance stands as a singular triumph. Tomasi and Bertram have crafted something truly special with this book.”—Scott Snyder (Wytches)
“House of Penance is Peter Tomasi’s finest work to date, a haunting, macabre experience that will stay with any thoughtful reader long after its conclusion. A fine tale well told, and highly recommended.”—Garth Ennis (Preacher)


Greek cemeteries

The cemetery of Anastasi (Cemetery of the Resurrection) in Piraeus, April 2015.

Unsurprisingly a lot of these monuments were produced by large workshops, the size and styles could be customized and a bust with the likeness of the deceased usually adorned these architectural curiosities-now the busts have been abandoned for simple photographs. The symbol of the cross was a necessary addition to make these monuments permissible in their christian orthodox context

Other odd elements are “burning hearts”, skulls, anchors- Piraeus as a harbor was home to thriving ship owners and sailors- as well flower arrangements. Garlands, loutrophoroi, soft reliefs, palmettes and sphinxes were decorations to go with the archaizing style of the monuments. Wreaths and burning fires are two elements alluding to funerary customs. Actual wreaths, flower arrangements and a lit flame, signify that the grave is being visited and taken care of by surviving relatives to help pacify the souls of the dead. Adding these elements as sculptural details can signify that those who made the grave “feared” that at some point the grave would be abandoned by the living-either because of neglect, or because there would be no surviving relations. 

I managed to identify a workshop on two monuments, the workshop of the brothers Kotzamani.It seems the brothers were originally from Tenos, but their funerary monuments are to be found all over Greece, and some exist also in greek christian cemeteries in Egypt.