The Zambujal stories

The Zambujal stories

The exhibition in Museu Leonel Trindade about the Castro do Zambujal, was the perfect excuse to visit the city of Torres Vedras, last December. It had been years since the last time I was there, and there's a lot of talented sketchers and watercolorists in the region, worth getting to know. I couldn't imagine a better way to spend a slow Saturday on the weekend before Christmas. A exposição no Museu Leonel Trindade sobre o Castro do Zambujal foi a desculpa perfeita para finalmente visitar Torres Vedras, em Dezembro. Passaram-se anos deste a última vez que…Read more
A Baixa vista do Jardim de S. Pedro de Alcântara

A Baixa vista do Jardim de S. Pedro de Alcântara

A strange and sunny day had hit the city when Pedro Alves and I decided it was time to face the mighty challenge of sketching the crown jewel of Roque Gameiro's portfolio. Beforehand, we had the minor challenge of having to climb half way up the São Roque hill. We've been avoiding this because of its time-consuming potential, but an unusually long break from work had blessed us. From the vantage point, with the whole downtown at our feet, we could pinpoint almost all of the sites where we had sketched in the footsteps…Read more
Rua do Século (antiga Rua Formosa)

Rua do Século (antiga Rua Formosa)

From the Alto da Cotovia, many stories have rolled down the hill - a cleptomaniac arsonist, doomed construction sites, an underground water reservoir that still exists to this date, with an unconspicuous underground path to São Pedro de Alcântara and branching out in all directions of the hill of the Jesuits. All these stories are already better told that I could ever tell them, right here. Our story is a much simpler one to tell: having depleted the Roque Gameiro sites in our jurisdiction (those which our lunchtime allows), Pedro Alves, Tomás Reis and…Read more
Capela de Nossa Senhora da Guia (Rua da Mouraria)

Capela de Nossa Senhora da Guia (Rua da Mouraria)

This old 16th century portal in the edge of the old town of Lisboa, in the area called Mouraria, aparently hides architectural and artistic treasures inside its doors. There's a police station in what used to be a children's hospital and later a home for orphan boys. Loads of stories - biblical stories - are told in the walls of the eight flights of stairs that go up the inner patio of the building, in the form of azulejo, the blue painted tiles that are so present in Portuguese monuments. (to be continued) Este…Read more
No Largo da Achada

No Largo da Achada

On the top edge of the Largo da Achada, there's a sheltered alley with a staircase and a few private gardens in a public space. Space is seldom entirely public or entirely private in the old town of Lisboa. There's also one of the dozens of casas de ressalto existing in the city. These are residential buildings, mostly hailing from the 15th century, with overhanging timber-framed floors, leaning over streets and alleys. A clever way of expanding your real estate, which finds its counterpart in the modern marquises. Clever, but dangerous, as most of these overhanging floors collapsed during…Read more