Henri's berichten over zijn recente activiteiten

Henri's reports on his recent activities

Personal website: http://members.ziggo.nl/here

dinsdag 11 november 2014

The Revolutions of 1989

Twenty Five years ago the Iron Curtain opened, the Berlin Wall fell, and my perception of Europe changed 180 degrees. Central Europe became the heart of the continent again. Also my studies in the history of science benefited from the new freedom when the borders opened: being able to travel to former eastern Germany again.
Dr U. Jordis from Vienna, who fell in love with the Glass Flowers of Harvard during a postdoc in Boston, went to Dresden to uncover the traces the Blaschkas left in Hosterwitz. He established contact with the last surviving member of the Blaschka family and accommodated subsequently, in 1993, the visit of representatives of Harvard (Susan Rossi-Wilcox) and the Corning Museum of Glass (David Whitehouse) to the home of the Blaschka family. On that occasion they managed to acquire the last remains of the Blaschka studio. I was lucky as to being allowed to study these materials from September 1995 onwards, and earlier, in April of that year I visited the Berlin Blaschka models. 
Communist Czechoslovakia had its revolution in 1989 as well, and later, in 1992, the country split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia.  In 1997 I made my first trip to Prague and then made new contacts, which would further my Frič studies.  

dinsdag 4 november 2014

Horse taxidermy in Brussels

October 14th, we visited the museum Hallepoort in Brussels and found ourselves eye to eye with two stuffed horses, the oldest known specimens of horse taxidermy in Europe.
These are the horses of Albert VII (1559–1621) Archduke of Austria who was,  jointly with his wife, Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633), sovereign of the Low Countries between 1598 and 1621.  According to tradition, the horse in armour saved the life of Albert during the siege of Ostend in 1602, while the other one was ridden by Isabella at her entry into Brussels in 1598