Grand Tour – Katy Blackburn and Sylvia Welch

Grand Tour

This past March, our senior class travelled to Greece and Italy on the “Grand Tour”. We were given the opportunity to see many picturesque views as well as incredible man-made structures. There were so many sights that took my breath away that I can’t even count them, but there was one place in particular that deeply impacted me. On our last stop, we visited Rome, and we toured the Vatican Museum and then headed to St. Peter’s Basilica. I did not really know what to expect upon entering the basilica.  I had only heard the name and knew many famous Renaissance artists had worked on it. However, when I walked in the doors, any expectations I had were blown away. The celling was higher than any other celling I’d ever seen, with majestic pillars soaring to the top and vibrant colors popping out at me everywhere I looked. I stared at the celling alone for several minutes, admiring all the patterns and detail of the molding that I could hardly believe a human actually created. Then, after looking at the celling, I turned my attention to basically everything else, all the walls and depictions of different scenes on the walls. At first I was in awe of the scenes when I thought they were paintings, but when I found out that the 12-foot pictures were made out of mosaics, I could hardly believe it. Someone individually placed small squares onto the wall to create a beautiful masterpiece? It was simply incredible, and I only wish I could have been there to watch the process of creation. I think what really impacted me about St. Peter’s Basilica was the fact that it was so magnificent and on such a large scale, but at the same time it was full of detail and on a small scale as well. It was such an amazing experience, and it is definitely one that I will never forget.

-Katy Blackburn and Sylvia Welch

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