Art has always been about expression and expression knows no bounds. Whether it is to make a statement or to beautify an element or location, through the lines of buildings, strokes of paint brushes, or moulded in plaster, the design has continued to emerge throughout the existence of humanity. Art aficionados barely need anything, except a map to see the best of it all.
Here are 6 countries that will compel you with their art and architecture:
Japan– The country balances between striking traditional architecture and cutting edge design. Pray at the 1,200 years old Kiyomizu- Dera, the serene Meiji Jingu Shrine in bustling Tokyo, 30 feet tall and host to Kanoon of Mercy, Kamakura Hasedera Temple or one of the many temples and shrines spread all across Japan. The bright vermillion gated shrine, Fushimi Inari Taisha, is especially known to be a beautiful pathway that gives off the impression of beautiful infinity. Transitioning back to modern beauty is an effortless glance with world-class architectural sights like the Tokyo Skytree, Miho Museum, Open – air sculpture park and Nezu Museum. In Tokyo itself, you can experience art in a literal manner at teamLab Borderless, a three dimensional 10,000 square meter space where art and technology collide.
Spain– The homeland of Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Francisco Goya, museums in Spain, namely Museo Reina Sofia, Picasso Museum and Museo Del Prado are decorated with paintings by these revolutionary artists. While Spanish painters have been the pioneers in art forms like cubism and surrealism, most of the paintings share the commonality of portraying the civil war in the country. The country has been the birthplace of people from the most influential artists to the renowned architect Antoni Gaudi. Gaudi’s playground, Barcelona showcases monuments across the city like Parque Güell, Palacio Güell, Casa Mila and Casa Vicens. The crowning jewel of the Spanish beauty is the Barcelona church La Sagrada Familia, which was under construction for over 100 years.
India– India is a land bustling with culture and religion, holding close to 2 million temples. Drown in the splendour of Madurai’s Meenakshi Temple which is considered to be one of the largest and the oldest temples of the country. The world-renowned Golden Temple in Amritsar is known as the right place to find the peace within but is also a must-see dazzling beauty. Pray at the richest Hindu temple, Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Kerala, with its 28 pillars, which produce musical notes when tapped. The houses of worship are known for their exotic carvings, elaborate pillars and jaw-dropping architecture, which have stood the test of time. The devoted pilgrims often have to cross a lot of hurdles to reach their required destination, like the Vaishnodevi Temple which is located at an altitude of 5200Ft.
Latin America– The streets of Latin America have become a canvas for its people, often utilised to propagate messages of political, social and personal feelings. Bogota, a city teeming with street art and artists, has some of the most elaborate and famous pieces to present with it adorning walls of massive buildings, housings, shops and hotels. Buenos Aires’ walls are a story of the cities struggles over the years. The mural ‘Pedro Lujan and his dog’ painted by Martin Ron, is one of the cities more quirky and well-known murals. The city of Rio in Brazil is also a burst of colours when it comes to its streets. With the recent World Cup and Olympics held there, the number of art projects has increased. The world’s largest mural graffiti painted by Eduardo Kobra, as a homage to the 2016 Rio Olympic, adorns the city’s waterfront along 560 feet.
France– A country famous for its food, fashion and culture, France has always been an aesthete’s heaven. The Louvre, which is the world’s largest museum, is as much as an architectural marvel as the art it houses. The grandeur of the place is only enhanced by the priceless pieces it houses, from Leonardo Di Caprio’s Mona Lisa to Michelangelo’s The Dying Slave. French artist Claude Monet was responsible for helping name the impressionist movement, the influence of which is present even today. One cannot be remiss to admire the various art galleries, museums, stunning architectural marvels when they visit. For those who prefer a more modernised buffet of art, the capital Paris offers to them a variety of contemporary art museums like the National Museum of Modern Art and Palais Tokyo. A tour of France’s art scene won’t be over without a look at the street art, which has taken root and flourished in the country.
China– In the northern borders of the country lies one of the greatest structures known to humans, the great wall of China. Travellers often become conflicted as to what fascinates them more, the ancient construction of the wall or the breathtaking beauty that can be seen from it. It seems the fascination with pathways continues to consume the minds of the Chinese. Zhangjiajie Glass Bridge was the longest and tallest glass bottom bridge when it first opened in 2016 can carry 800 people in one go. Then there are the 8000 soldiers in Shaanxi, made out of Terracotta. These sculptures have been around since 210 BCE and still attract tourists from all over the world. If you’re looking to wander around appealing areas, the Forbidden City, Summer Palace and the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, Leshan Giant Buddha in Sichuan and The Bund are worth wandering around.
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