Keep Moving Forward… 08.09.10

Travel

Stone Lion project

Rummaging through some old documents and found the image shown below. It is a photo of a poster arrangement I had on my office wall while working in Changsha, Hunan Province, China in early 2001.

I was working on an Exhibition Idea that counterpointed various different Stone Lion pairs, a) for comparison of changes in Sculpture Style, and b) as a kind of “lonely Hearts” Project where each lion would have a caption from a well known Asian Dating Site and the viewer had to then match up the right pairs, as an interactive activity. This mockup used standard, snapshot sized images.

Unfortunately, the Exhibition never saw the light of day, (…although, some of the pictures did make into an unrelated group exhibition;) due to funding constraints and some somewhat local indifference, to the ubiquitous subject matter – another one of those project still to be completed, “some day.” (…or God-forbid, stolen.)

 

A Pride of Stone Lions from Changsha, Hunan Province, China

A Pride of Stone Lions from Changsha, Hunan Province, China

For today, that’s what’s in my

Line of Sight.


Panoramas from the Baltic

These images were made with an iPhone 5 and post-processed in Adobe Lightroom. They were taken on a recent trip aboard the “Hendrika Bartelds” as part of the ELSA Project. They are panoramic landscapes and I hope you enjoy them.


Switzerland

Beginners Ski Slopes beneath the gaze of the North Wall of the Eiger, Switzerland

Beginners Ski Slopes beneath the gaze of the North Wall of the Eiger, Switzerland

 

North Face of the Eiger

North Face of the Eiger

Biel, Switzerland as seen from the Academy of Sport.

Biel, Switzerland as seen from the Academy of Sport.

A garden trough near the Old Rolex factory, Biel, Switzerland

A garden trough near the Old Rolex factory, Biel, Switzerland

Locally decorated fire hydrant near some grape terraces.

Locally decorated fire hydrant near some grape terraces.

Contempating the lifecycle of grapes. Zen rock stack on a stone wall

Contempating the lifecycle of grapes. Zen rock stack on a stone wall

The Anchor and The Heart

The Anchor and The Heart

Biel Old City.

Biel Old City.


A Birthday in Vienna

I’m on a plane back to Hamburg after having spent the last four days in Vienna. This trip was a gift to me for Christmas, from my wife and son and very much a grand suprise. The best surprise of all was that we would be celebrating my birthday at the same time. We stayed, in Baden, with some good friends from Hanoi, who’s hospitality was superb.

They spent time to make us comfortable, and to show us around this former, grand capital of an empire. My birthday lunch was in a restaurant that traced it’s continuous operation back to 1447, and we were also blessed to be able to watch a Greek Orthodox Ceremony – The Blessing the Waters on the Danube Channel. Lastly, we had a lovely afternoon tea with our friend’s mother, in a wonderful apartment overlooking the Karlskirche Square.

This is the first time anyone from my family has been back in this city, for three generations.  It is hard not to walk around wide eyed, naieve and blind to the daily operations of this city. I enjoyed my visit, but it has given me pause to think… and distractedly think… for Vieneese people can be described as friendly, aloof, or downright rude. One wonders the reason for such rudness. But then you look around at the remnants of a former glorious capital of a recently downsized empire made redundant by external factors, maybe there Is reason for it.

By recent, I mean within the last one hundred years. And by examining this it is not hard to see where this apparent rudeness might come from. Once these people were the Princes of the Universe, when the banner of the Austro-Hungarian Empire owned the air that coursed through the lungs of Europe… and Vienna, a capital populated by people, that were born to rule. There are still some alive who can recount the days of former Empire, and a vast generation of those brought up in the shadow and dust of it’s calamitous demise. The rudeness, in my opinion, does not come from arogance so much, but from a deep, internalised bitterness over the sudden change of fortune of a noble ruling class and their underlying societal strata that bouyed them up, a strata in which everone knew their position, and status was respected.

Now, no longer the home of the ruling elite, or the city at the heart of the sun, the people of Vienna have fallen from grace and are now  no, more special, than anyone else in the world,  the person on the street, is just another individual. Yet that unfocussed, personally internalised and unacknowledged bitterness remains, even to be commented on by the Vieneese themselves, sometimes when a waiter of a well established venue may rudely rebuke a customer for not knowing the local practice or custom. Uppety waiters that smack the hand that feeds them, information desk clerks that snap answers that are more comfusing than the situation that caused the asking, their time is passing, and they feel it, and thus the bitternes grows.

Vienna is a town of stunning architecture, grand boulevards, long history and long established businesses, of people who are friendly, generous, helpful, and bafflingly rude. But then, so too is Hanoi.

For today, that’s what’s in my

Line of Sight


Hamburg for Christmas, 2011

Well, its Christmas time again and I’m here in Hamburg with the wife’s family. This is a regular family tradition, and I like visiting the Hamburger Rathausmarkt Weihnachtsmarkt which has always been super to visit.

This year there was no snow and much of the weather has been between 2-6 deg. C – not that I’m complaining, but, you know, White Christmas and all that. Hope you all have a really good Xmas-New Year Season. See you soon

For today, that’s what’s in my

Line of Sight


This Week in Photography – Australia

Hi folks,just a quick note to let you all know that I will be travelling for the next two weeks in Australia.

Normally, I am based in Hanoi, but the oportunity to visit my parents came up and I’m taking it.

What this means is that for the next couple of weeks there will be a little silence from me. When I get back, I promise to tidy up the loose ends and continue with some new information. Til then, enjoy, review the previous info I’ve posted, there’s quite a lot to digest and cya when I get back.

Welcome to my

Line of Sight