Women’s porch, Chartres

No one ever needs to take another picture of this building, because we have enough for everybody. The north porch, or women’s porch, is where French sculpture (specifically French, not international like Gothic) begins (according to Henry Adams’s book). The acanthus leaves on the columns signify, if I remember Kenneth Clark’s book correctly, the moment nature begins to be perceived in French art for its own sake, beyond pattern and symbol. I forgot about that until I saw them! There are cafes built up very close to it so it was not possible to get a good view. It is incredibly beautiful.

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