The Uffizi: Encountering the Masters

Have you ever seen the following image?

Boticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” c. 1480; Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy

I’m sure you have, probably in a textbook or on the Internet or a poster in a cafe.

But what would you do if you had the chance to see this masterpiece in person?

If you’re a nerd like me, you’d rush to see it. So that’s what my friends and I did while we were in Florence one weekend (among other things).

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From the classroom to the Forum

On Friday afternoons at Loyola, I usually head back to my room to unwind and relax after a long week of classes, homework, and extra-curricular activities.

Sometimes I have Evergreen meetings to attend, but I traditionally spend a large majority of my Friday afternoons in my room.

My traditional Friday routine was disrupted as soon as I landed in Italy. Instead of staying in my room, I found myself running around the Eternal City, or taking a bus to the train station for a weekend away…

This difference didn’t really hit me until this past weekend when, instead of heading home, my friends and I walked twenty minutes to the Markets of Trajan, which are a part of the Museum of the Imperial Fora. I willingly – and gladly! – trudged down Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, trekked across Piazza Venezia, skirted past Trajan’s Column, scurried up a flight of stairs, and entered the Museum – all on a “lazy” Friday afternoon.

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A view of Trajan’s Market from the Forum of Trajan

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Exploring Baltimore

I have to admit that it wasn’t until recently that I truly started to take advantage of the multitude of activities and attractions Baltimore offers…

I have been trying to get off campus and find out for myself if the phrase that many of the benches in the city have engraved on them, “Baltimore: Greatest City in America,” is true.

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Now that the warm weather is *officially* here, it seems like the perfect time to do some exploring before I am completely swamped with final exams and end of semester commitments and work.

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Celebrating Light and Life in Baltimore

We got off the bus, not really knowing what to expect, and as we walked towards the Inner Harbor, we were overwhelmed by the crowd, the music, and the lights.

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My friends and I trekked down to the Harbor for Light City on Thursday night, so we weren’t expecting too many people. It was a school night and a work night, after all. We thought we might bump into some other Loyola students, since it was “Loyola Night.”

To our surprise, there were thousands of people walking around the Inner Harbor enjoying the festival. I’ve never been so happy to see so many people in one place, all celebrating Baltimore…

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Light City: Celebrating Baltimore through Art, Music, Innovation & Community

Light City is happening in Baltimore next week!

You may have heard about Light City, either by word of mouth or signs on Loyola’s campus. Or if you’re like me, you first saw something advertised on the napkin dispensers in Boulder Cafe and Iggy’s. Greyhounds, keep this on your radar for when you come back from Easter break.

The first large-scale, international light festival in the United States, Light City “will provide a backdrop for the celebration of ideas, ingenuity and creativity through art, music and innovation.”

Translation: Baltimore is hosting a really cool art festival that features visual and performance art throughout the city, along with a conference series discussing social themes such as justice, equity, innovation, and sustainability.

The festival, which runs from March 28 through April 3, is going to be a major event for the city AND for Loyola, because Loyola is one of the sponsors.

This is going to be an amazing opportunity for Baltimore to come together and celebrate the arts, innovation, and community that is Baltimore, so make it a priority to get downtown for this festival when you can. A few things you definitely won’t want to miss…

  • The festival opens on Monday, March 28. If you’re already back on campus from Easter break that afternoon, the opening parade starts at 7 p.m.

There will be live music, floats, drum lines, and stilt walkers. I recommend planning to be back on campus as soon as you can, so that you can head downtown for this opening ceremony. Loyola students will be marching in the parade to kickoff the week’s events, and it should be really cool.

  • More than a mile of incredible light art installations: all free and open to the public every night.

From the south shore of the Inner Harbor to Harbor East, festival -goers can explore 1.5 miles of world-class installations.

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Loyola shuttles will be transporting students downtown in order to participate in this amazing festival celebrating the city all Loyola students call home (at least, our home away from home).

This is a chance for Loyola student to get off campus on a spring night and to do something cultured, something original. Light City Baltimore is the first festival of this kind in America, so it’s bound to be something you’ve never seen before. What better thing to come back to school after Easter break than a major art and music festival downtown?!

Details on Loyola Night can be found here!

  • Check out Light City’s performance, light, and music schedule for more details about what is going on each night.

Roller ballet. Dance. Human dioramas. Concerts. Music fusion. Live performance painting. Choreography around LED exhibits and fire. Yes, fire. A giant illuminated interactive puppet show. Do I need to go on?

  • You can also get more involved with the events by volunteering.

What better way to contribute to this festival than to volunteer? Light City needs a ton of volunteer help, and this is sure to be a rewarding experience.

If you can’t make it downtown for the festival, fear not…

  • Many individual neighborhoods are also participating in the magic of this event, including Hampden. So even if you can’t get all the way downtown, you can head over to Hampden or any of the other neighborhoods participation.

Check out the profiles of the different neighborhoods to see what amazing things are being done by different parts of the greater Baltimore community.

For more information on the event, visit the Light City website. Follow Light City on Facebook (event), Twitter, and Instagram. And learn how Loyola is involved with Light City!