Madrid 19th October 2011
Looks like I have been mixed up with dates! Somehow I was in a state of mind thinking PLDC would start today, but really today was a pre-conference program in which I am not involved. There is a welcome party tonight with the real event starting tomorrow. I used the day to do some sight seeing as I had never been in Madrid before so perfect to take in the sights and sounds of the city. There is a great city tour bus on which you can hop and off at your leaisure visiting places at your own pace. I started with route 1
which has a pick up point right outside my hotel…
My first stop was Palacio Real where the old heritage lamp posts adorn the streets, some of them propped up with additional façade floodlights. Some ceremony was going on when I visited so I got some horses and carriages as a bonus for my “tourist” pictures. The roof Dome of the Catedral De La Almunia, next to the Palacio offered great 360 degree views of the city. With the sun in attendance the views were really nice with great light and shadow plays. Inside the Catedral there was some great light from the coloured lead-glass windows. And when it comes to burning a candle…its LED nowadays!
My next stop was the Museo Del Prado, like the Louvre in Paris, a must see place. Though not allowed I did manage to take one snapshot inside before I was stopped taking more. A great exploration in museum lighting, general ambient artificial lighting, focussed framed lighting and daylighting, its all there. Besides the lighting of course the paintings from all great European masters are there to appreciate, absolutely amazing. Some of the painters (like my own dutchie, Rembrandt) had great understanding of light.
In one of my final stops I could not resist visiting the famous Bernabeu Stadium, the home of Real Madrid, Jose Mourinho and Ronaldo. The tour was certainly worthwhile but what struck me most was that the part of the field that was in the shadow was being complemented with artificial lighting (see pictures below). In my limited spanish I managed to understand from the caretakers that they do that every day when the sun shines to make sure the grass grows even and maintains total uniformity throughout. Didn’t know that…of course the grass in Bernabeu must be one of the holiest grounds of soccer so no cost or efforts are spared to keep it in tip top condition! Could not figure out the light source, looked very sodiumish but that could be the
contrast with daylight.
In Light Watch today pictures from the Palacio, the Catedral, Prado and Bernabeu including my brief encounter with Jose Mourinho! 🙂
Light Watch 185: Impressions from my city tour today