Sticks and Stones, an intervention

I took some time yesterday to say goodbye to the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin. No, I’m not planning to move away, but there will be major renovation works soon, so the New National Gallery will be closed from 2015 for several years.  Several years, what an awful news.

Albeit the loss the city will face in terms of contemporary art offer, if you are in the city head there, and just enjoy the wonderful installation designed by British architect David Chipperfield. After the great renovation made at Neues Museum in Museum Island, he worked in the open glass hall of the New National Gallery by displaying 144 impressive tree trunks.

David Chipperfield, Sticks and Stones, intervention, installation view

Official Picture from the Museum website. © Photo: David Becker

I was blessed with a beautiful sunny day and the reflections of the light, the rays trespassing and the shadows produced were stunning. The synergy created between place, materials and light was the highlight of my Sunday. Additionally visitors create beautiful interactions by touching the 8m tall trees, by moving around, by creating new shadows.

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Toddler playing

Toddler playing

The exceptionality of living this open space in such a different way is striking if you are usually used to see it as a blank canvas, with no pillars sustaining its free floating roof. Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe designed the space to be widely open, an interaction of granite floors, steel columns and glass. The introduction of wood on the granite, literally stick and stones, adds new meanings to the space itself: it gives a natural support to the roof, that for all this years; it gives also a sense of closure, anticipating the structural works the museum is about to undergo. An English nursery rhyme says “Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”. I saw this installation also as a wish, to avoid cracking the soul of the New National Gallery with the upcoming works.

Sony Center in the background

Sony Center in the background

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The exhibition continues downstairs until December 31st, if you have no money to pay the ticket just go there and enjoy the forest in the hall, it is for free and really worth a visit.

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P.S.: as you may see the pictures were taken with a mobile phone. I had no power to control light and sharpness. At the end, I quite like the rough result this time.

 

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Berlin. Lights and Politics.

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There is a wonderful, free event at the Bundestag in Berlin, going on every evening at 7:45pm since the beginning of Summer, ending October 3rd.

October 3rd, does it ring a bell? It’s Tag der Deutschen Einheit, the day to celebrate the German reunification.

A friend of a friend brought attention to a film and light show along the river Spree, and curious to see I brought my camera along. What I saw what beyond expectations, a nice 30 minutes  journey through parliamentary German history, from the Reichstag to the Bundestag, across the facts that changed Germany (the crisis, Nazism, war, the wall and its fall ’til the modern days).

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I am not a German citizen, but I have been living here enough to tell the good and bad of it. Not by any mistakes, the fact to have the possibility to be involved with such an important yet elusive element like politics is a sign of civility: It’s a sign democracy is working here.

There is nothing better than education and promotion when well explained, in a clear, catchy way; not to forget for free too. I found the event an excellent way to remember people the importance of politics, moreover the importance to vote.

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The show is subbed in English and always accompanied by famous German songs. The part about the Fall of the Wall was really entertaining and also quite moving, I must admit.

Here is a video:

Thanks Deutscher Bundestag for the pleasant event.

HEY! You are still on time to watch it, more info: https://www.bundestag.de/grossbildprojektion

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Berlin. Sky Art. Snippets.

It’s been a very interesting artsy month indeed.

Last Saturday in Berlin we experienced a very cool event in Mitte, precisely at Neue Nationalgalerie and related exhibition at Deutsche Bank KunstHalle “Otto Piene. More Sky”.

Let me start by saying I didn’t know this artist, at least I didn’t remember of him, but nevertheless its interest hold me an entire weekend, buzzing about him, despite the crazy heath hitting the Hauptstadt. It was a sky art exhibition!

This is a great video by Deutsche Bank to understand how big and exciting, especially with the help of the darkness, it was.

His beautiful description explains better than anything all the celebrations Deutsche Bank KunstHalle made for Otto Piene.

His Manifesto.

His Manifesto.

I took some pictures at Deutsche Bank KunstHalle I want to share with you, enjoy.

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That yellow...

That yellow…

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Greetings from Berlin, ’til the next time.

 

Kreuzberg, beloved Kiez

Karneval der Kulturen is a celebration for all the different cultural associations in Berlin; they come in my neighbourhood, Xberg, once a year to party and parade along the street. It’s a very nice, messy and feeling-young event.

This year all the elements were in one mix: sun, heath, crowd, music, food, alcohol and “multikulti“.

I take this space now to focus on my point of view, meaning the lonely me walking in the streets with a camera, bumping across people every second, and looking at the infinite people looking at the Karneval from a terrace. Bliss.

I hope you enjoy this different ‘angle’.

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I loved these mothers with their children. There is so much Xberg in this pic.

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Who cares if you have a party going in- and outside your terrace when your neighbour is Kanye West playing a solo guitar??

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Many old people and couples enjoyed the view: so much life going on in the street, so much youth, an unique view for the weekend. I loved to see them involved from their window.

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A cheeky refreshening service for the community: this is how Xberg contributes to beat the heat (34 degrees are no joke around here)

A special mention to: This bloke. He was having the time of his life indeed.

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Dear stranger, life belongs to the curious. Come downstairs next time, and see yourself.

Did you enjoy these pics? Please find more ones about Karneval der Kulturen, stands and its street parade here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/60353299@N08/sets/72157644743713887/

Staatoper für alle!

Good weather is gracefully adorning Berlin this June.

Good weather, warm temperatures, positive feelings around East and West B.

Last Sunday I was right in the middle, in Mitte, for a great event for free: Staatoper für alle.

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Free music is already a good thing for a city, but what gives a more interesting twist is the fact that it’s made in the middle of city centre, by blocking one of the most important street from transports etc, just for the pleasure to occupy the square, Babelplatz, its street and surroundings. I must admitI really admire how organically my fellow citizens come for this kind of events; 95% of them, moreover, come super-organised, with chairs, blankets, food and drinks. I would rename the event *Bring Your Own Camping Chair Sunday* if I could! 🙂

I love it, it’s a kind of organised spontaneity you can see vividly in Germany.

I make an album of photos during the event, available here:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/60353299@N08/sets/72157644965237065/

Here following some beautiful people I found around me: We were 42.000 at the end. Wow.

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