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Cultural Architecture - Altos de Chavon

Cultural Architecture - Altos de Chavon
Photo Information
Copyright: John Reasbeck (ubc64) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 53 W: 25 N: 122] (555)
Genre: Places
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-02-13
Categories: Architecture
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/500 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Map: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Agricultural Machinery, Friday Theme for 2009/05/01 Cultural Architecture [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2009-04-30 14:15
Viewed: 3634
Points: 14
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This photo shows the Church of St. Stanislaus at Los Altos de Chavón in the Dominican Republic. The church was one of the buildings created as part of the recreation of a medieval artists' village in Italy. My wife and I visited this village when our cruise ship, Celebrity Constellation, docked near Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic in Feb./2005. When I became aware of the theme for this week, I immediately thought of our tour of this fantastic location, and the photos that I took.

I have pasted below some information about the church that I found at: www.planetware.com/la-romana/altos-de-chavon-church-of-st-stanislaus-dom-ro-stan.htm:

The Church of St Stanislaus at the center of the Altos de Chavón was named after the patron saint of Poland in tribute to Pope John Paul II, who visited the island in 1979 and left some of the saint's ashes behind.

At the following site, I found a description of the village, which I have quoted below: www.losmejoresdestinos.com/destinos/republica_dominicana/altos_de_chavon_en.htm:


In 1976, on a verdant plateau 100 miles east of Santo Domingo (the historic capital of the Domnican Republic) an extraordinary cultural undertaking began to unfold.

Dominican stonecutters, woodworkers, and iron-smiths combined their crafts to create the rich architectural landscape that would emerge as Altos de Chavon.
Today this vibrant cultural village perched high above the Chavon River embodies half a millennium of the island's finest tradition of crafts and art.

Below, I have included more village information that I found at: www.casadecampo.com.do/?p=index_altos_de_chavon:

Altos de Chavon, is an architectural wonder, a 16th century replica of a Mediterranean village perched high above the Chavón River. The village was designed by Dominican architect Jose Antonio Caro, and created by Italian master designer and cinematographer Roberto Coppa. Dominican artisans handcrafted the stone pathways, decorative ironwork, furniture and enchanting buildings, reviving almost forgotten crafts of metal work and stone carving. Under Coppa´s direction, each stone was hand cut, each wooden door frame was handcrafted and each wrought-iron detail hand-forged. Construction of the village began in 1976 and the village was inaugurated in 1982 with the concert of Frank Sinatra at the amphitheater.

I only had my little 5MP Sony DSC-W1 camera with me on this trip. I took this shot with the lens adjusted to maximum wide angle at 7.9mm (or 38mm effective, related to 35mm format). I was using ISO 100, with a high shutter speed of 1/500 sec and aperture of f5.6. Due to the wide angle, my DOF was not too bad. I took the shot of the church from behind a pillar, in order to display a close-up of some of the architectural features and to provide some additional depth. I adjusted a bit for colors, contrast and brightness, and sharpened a little. I included the two tourists on the right in order to enable me to provide a reasonable aspect ratio for the photo – besides, I thought that they added some of the feeling of the visit.

Janice, Athila, tiobibi, jjcordier, Royaldevon, naturelover has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To rminkow: Thanks!ubc64 1 06-06 22:23
To Dot: Thanks!ubc64 1 05-02 21:04
To hifimusicdai: Thanks!ubc64 1 05-02 20:58
To Royaldevon: Thanks!ubc64 1 05-02 20:55
To jjcordier: Thanks!ubc64 1 05-02 20:52
To Athila: Thanks!ubc64 1 05-02 20:49
To Janice: Thanks!ubc64 1 05-02 20:43
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3204 W: 262 N: 7964] (34497)
  • [2009-04-30 14:43]
  • [+]

Hi John, first, your notes and the websites very interesting. A 16th century replica of a Mediterranean village. WOW
And to see the church and all its interesting brickwork and patterns - I bet the tourists love to visit it.
I have never heard of it before, so thank you for sharing

Bonsoir John,

Nice presentation for the Friday theme. Image is clean, sharp and well exposed. The post at the front give a nice perspective to the image, but I would have prefer to see it on the right so it wouldn't hide the middle of the church. Still a very interesting image showing the kind of material used by this culture to make building. Nice work and TFS.


L'architecture de cette église est très originale et tu en as réalisé une photo lumineuse et intéressante. Bonne note également.

Hello John,

A crisp, sharply detailed photograph making good use of the light and with very interesting notes.

My one niggle is the stone pillar, right in the f/g, which shrouds the appreciation of the fine building. I understand why you have done it, balancing it with its b/g friend, A couple of steps to the left and a little back may have given a better composition.

Kind regards,
Bev :-)

Lovely shot and interesting note. Good choice. TFS
warm regards

  • Great 
  • Dot Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1583 W: 40 N: 3488] (13942)
  • [2009-05-02 13:14]
  • [+]

HI John
The little church looks rugged and quite pretty in its surroundings.Having people in the shot adds to the composition.

Thank you for telling me that the date is off on my camera, I will recheck. Strange that when I upload the exiff it seems correct. Hummmm a mystery to solve.

HI John...this is composed nicely...fine details and light.


Hi John
What amazing and detailed architecture this old church has. If only homes where built the same way now, they might withstand our chinook winds better. The lighting is great and shows off the front entrance very well even though it's in the shade.
TFS Janice

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