Saturday, 2 December 2017

First Sunday of the month

Looking up at the main tower
Winter is a great time for some serious museum visiting. Firstly there are not too many tourists around, which lets you get a very good look at what there is to see without jostling with bus tours and over and above that, most museums are free on the first Sunday of the month starting in November and going through to March.

The first Sunday in November we were at the doors of Cluny abbey to see what has happened since our last visit.

Viewed from the "Farinier"
They have changed the film again, for the better this time. Gone are the 3D glasses, which is a relief as they never fitted me well and always made me feel a little queasy. Also at the entry to the film room there was a rack which suggested that you could use a headset to translate what was going on in the film. This is an excellent idea because the film gives a lot of information about the abbey and considering the number of foreign visitors there are, it would be a good idea if they can understand it too. However, I don’t know if they are considering the idea or if the headsets are only available in the summer, but there weren’t any when we were there. So please Cluny, we are waiting!

It is also nice that you can get back into the area where there are some half restored columns which are outside. This particular point of view, looking up and down the length of the church from “inside”, really gives you a real impression of the original length.

Cees emerging from the blue lit carpet....
Sadly the interactive screens have gone which projected the 3D model on to what you can actually see. They were not in very good working order last time we were there and I am not surprised they have now gone, but it is a pity that this facility has been lost purely because the hardware was not robust enough. Let’s hope they will get some more sturdy screens and reinstall this facility before the next tourist season.

There was a temporary art installation where you could go inside a blue lit cubicle made out of carpet and listen to the sounds of birds and Gomera whistling language. A bit surreal and I am obviously a Philistine as I didn’t quite “get it” but it was nice and warm on a cold day!

However, in the transept there was a beautiful sculpture by Anne Poivilliers made up if filaments and layers of material swirling around itself, the explication says “The filaments are assembled to creation a volume which appears to be suspended in space.” It certainly adds to the transept and I hope they will leave it there, but I suspect it is only temporary.

Anne Poivilleirs' beautiful sculpture
I am sure there are more details that I missed, but it just shows that the site is constantly developing and worthy of regular visits.

So tomorrow is the next “first Sunday” - we are still debating where to go, can't wait.

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