Little Girl at the Alcazar, Seville, November 2010
I came to the Alcazar late on my trip through Spain. After experiencing overwhelming deja vu in Toledo, wandering the Thyssen-Bournemisza in Madrid and nearly passing out from the beauty of the Alhambra in Grenada I got to Seville with the distinct feeling of disengagement. Another bloody palace. Fine. It's just another bloody palace.
The Alcazar is not just another bloody palace.
I've got this inkling that there is a part of me which is undeniably Moorish. I have dark eyes, unruly hair, olive skin (when it gets a lick of sun) I'd fit in very well in the Ottoman empire. Being of Cornish and Welsh tin mining stock is just far too ordinary.
Anyway, on my last afternoon in Seville, I braced myself for yet another bloody palace - but I shouldn't have worried. The place is entrancing.
I like the juxtapositions in this shot. The intricate, aged masonry, the parquetry and colourful woodwork, the greenery. You can imagine this as a working palace hundreds of year ago, courtesans wandering aimlessly, pomegranate in hand, withering under the Seville heat. The child, dressed in a flamenco costume, wandered into the shot. A princess in waiting. She had a right to be there. It was if she owned the place, galivanting around in her little red dress, the Alcazar atrium her playground.
How this place must appear to a child. Another spot in the world I'd go back to in a heartbeat.