Berlinale Mitte

February 9th 2014 was a windy Sunday, ruled by Berlinale and spinning clouds in an intense blue sky.

I love the effect a film festival provokes on a neighbourhood, Mitte, usually runs by offices, bureaucracy and mass of tourists. This Sunday was different, with an incredible amount of young people rushing to get to the screenings, less tourists, ice melting on the lakes and a genuine, quiet, positive vibe that Spring is coming soon.

The light in ‘der Himmel über Berlin‘ was too amazing not to do a cheeky photo-session, and results were beyond my expectations, so I posted a selection on my Flickr page, the best media for sharing photos without have to lose the quality.

Here’s the link:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/60353299@N08/sets/72157640746003013/

Bis bald.

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January, 1st 2014

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2014’s Eve had almost everything I would want to carry along this year of personal changes I feel already inside me. It started with fireworks – the popular, transitory grandeur in our darkness – and some drinks in company..

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There was a smile of a true friend, a good morning, a stroll along cemeteries of fun from the past night…
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And then, there was the time to feed the soul with art.

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Outside everything was quiet, like a fresh Sunday morning indeed.

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Another museum tries to battle my melancholic state of mind.. It’s the view of a kid pretending to write notes about Modern Art that dropped me back to reality, again with a smile.

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A moment, just a glimpse to get lost in the faces on the walls. Corridors became an arena of good feelings and memories of my studies..

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Empty stairs anticipate my next travel; it will be long, silent, sometimes scary but full of thoughts and, hopefully, ideas to develop and love to nourish.

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During my way back, tiredness was kicking hard, so was my need to create. It was on one side of the road, in a cold, cold German night that I saw countless stars. I remembered my father, who once taught me all the constellations, and it was a pretty lovely view, moreover memory. Around me, in the parking area, other lonely souls like mine were resting a bit, enjoying some fresh -freezing- air. Cold helps to collect the threads of your mind, to get conclusions.

So this is mine:

January, 1st 2014 was a day to remember. I have lots of new ideas and projects and I can’t wait to show something here. I am alive, breathing, smiling and I just keep walking. You’ll find me at your side whenever you want to look in that direction.

Berlin Festival of Lights

It is delightful to enjoy my city in the dark thanks to this festival, running for 10 days in October every year. The buildings and monuments get a new shape, thanks to fantastic, recreational lights that tell a story, a music, facts and events connected to the city.

This year, like last year, shame that the city centre and Unter den Linden were still sacrificed and closed due to the construction of a new underground line but I found incredible the show at Posdamer Platz.

I leave you a generous amount of pictures (WordPress quality permitting) to judge yourselves.

 

Gendarmenmarkt

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Alexanderplatz

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Berliner Dom

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Brandenburger Tor (and its Microsoft-ish Powerpoint-ish show in a sea of admiring tourists)

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U.S. Embassy

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Potsdamer Platz – Yay Pop Art!

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See you soon..

Dresden

I don’t have a bucket list.

I have things I want to do and see, but I tend to keep myself pretty open to what can come by accident and fate, so I have never been keen on pointing out on paper my desires. Desires changes, like your favourite song or city. Or better to me, desires duplicate, multiply, and sometimes you forget some of them for a while too. I prefer this state of mind, where I embrace everything I want, remember and look up for new stuff, so to keep my soul always on the chase.

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I went to visit Dresden on a quiet Sunday this early Fall. It has a very sizeable city centre and it’s possible to enjoy the trip in a day. I really adored the possibility to stroll along the river, to enjoy a piece of quiet on the city Brühl Terrace, to mingle with the people on the tables outside the restaurant.. There was a general atmosphere of lively joy thanks to Oktoberfest celebrations and Autumn street market, so the surroundings were simply lovely.

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When I was visiting the Gemäldegalerie in the afternoon, for my surprise, I was projected back 10 years at University.

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During my first year I took lots of classes, all art-related. I spent one entire month studying a “Camerino delle Pitture’, a room designed for the eye’s pleasures of the owner. To be specific, I studied Alfonso I d’Este’s Camerino and its five paintings, now around the world. I usually pay a visit to the National Gallery when in London just to have 10 minutes with the superb Titian’s Bacchus and Ariadne that literally takes my breath away every time I see it, moreover its Ekphrasis (key-word in modern art, here’s the wiki page in case you’re new to it’s meaning in Renaissance Art) . That Camerino and its paintings were a triumph of glory, technics and meaning. It was a well paid investment for mind and body. You cannot imagine the utter emotion when I saw one of the paintings once in the Camerino on the wall of the museum. I forgot it was there and I must admit I felt so, so good just watching at it. Arts give you something more in your ordinary life and I am thankful every day to have chosen cultural studies as Bachelor, even if now this crisis have lead to mistakenly forget about it in favour of more effective by short-term solutions or jobs or interests. There in a room full of strangers and other paintings, I felt the fire in my veins again like -to steal Bloc Party’s lyrics-“a silent smile, a private kind of happiness”. After the visit, I didn’t celebrate with wine as Bacchus would suggest, but the smile stayed upon my face quite a long time.

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I hope you liked my story about the Gemäldegalerie…. If not, I leave you also this short view from the city of Dresden, Sachsen, Germany I recorded. Bis bald.

P.S. If I have some comments or many likes I might add more lovely picture of the city…Just let me know!

Deutschland right in the middle

 

Nürnberg is a stunning piece of Germany, since the first time I visited the city I talked about it whenever asked why I find this country so beautiful and intense to choose to live in.

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The perfect getaway for a weekend, I find Altstadt, the city centre contoured by the walls, a damn romantic area to walk around. Churches and squares creates the perfect balance along with the river passing by in the middle and its bridges.

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View an der Fleischbrücke

Shops and Cafes, the centre is happily buzzing with people and activities..

..After the main square, Marktplatz, it gets hilly and your breath shorter; it’s the sign you’re reaching the fortress, where a perfect view and location offer the cheeky occasion to kiss your beloved one in an unique panorama.

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The view

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Fortess Garden

Close to the fortress a lovely square hosts Dürer’s house, an artist I always admired back in my arts studies, especially because of his importance in connecting Italian and German arts, moreover for his graphic artworks. The tour guide explained us how a citizen here used to show the ‘status/richness’ by building stone walls instead of bricks-wood. The more floors made of stones, the merrier/richer. Dürer had only 2 levels, I would have given him at least 3 for importance.

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Back to the days, Nürnberg was a city of Kaisers, kings and servants and the Pope was never so welcome, not by chance Hitler chose it as neuralgic point: its location, the center of Germany, its history…Shortly the city became a pulsing spot of this dark time, with its culmination during the the Nuremberg Trials. Also this part of history is not to miss while there.

Lighter topic: my top spot was by far Trödelmarkt area!

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Extra point also for Weißgerbergasse, stunning!

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I’ll end this description with a personal event: I was visiting St. Sebald Church when on a bench I found a memory card. 8GB. Like the lottery. I waited for someone to claim it, church filled with people, nobody came. So I took it and fantasised for 2 entire days about its content: I was so sorry someone lost it but at the same time so happy to see moments of some strangers who were in the same day in Nürnberg with me. Maybe I could see the rest of their holidays, maybe a birthday celebration, maybe a trekking in the nature or some cheeky selfies. I was pretty excited to escape with my mind while peeking in somebody else’s shoes.

Gutted at the end, the memory card was empty. But lucky me, I had some personal good memories of this wonderful city in Bayern!

Lakes calling. Bike answering.

Nice weather calls outdoor activities. This week my bike went to visit the lakes surround South-West Berlin. This is what the purple friend captured by the tour, few words, just room for the images.

Here some pictures:

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Wannsee

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Nikolassee

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Schlachtensee

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Krumme Lanke See

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Grunewaldsee (dog beach)

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Hundekehlesee

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Hasensprung divides Dianasee (above) from Koenigssee (below)

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Lovely Herthasee and Hubertussee from even more lovely Bismarkallee bridge.

Latest integration: the forest next, and around, to those lakes. Bliss.

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Bremen, oh Bremen

What happened to the early months in this 2013? I guess Winter has stolen January, February and March away . I felt like the cold season took possession of my actions and put the travelling side grounded for yelling several times “Will you end soon, darling?” but instead of darling a less flattering word…

Despite all the attempts, buds are back on the trees, so I am back on the road. And I’m done with weather complaints too, pinky promise. So I thought of give-it-a-go to more internal short trip, reaching destinations in Germany that I still haven’t been to. There are so many lovely cities all around!

Bremen is out of question one of the most beautiful cities in North Germany, pearl of the Hanseatic area. You can’t disagree with me if you go there, especially if you hear the old fashioned name, Freie Hansestadt Bremen. So much pride in it.

The jewel is Altstadt, the old town, with its main square, a lovely Town Hall with cheeky kamasutra decorations on the facade (have a deeper look pervs), and the main cathedral. Next to the Rathaus, the town hall, there is the symbol of Bremen, the statue of Die Bremer Stadtmusikanten directly from the Grimm’s Fairy Tales; it’s smaller than you imagine but the statue still has a special something around its four lucky-charms animals (a hint: touch both of donkey’s legs, not just one!).

I’d love to share the pictures of this picturesque part of the city, if I’m not wrong it’s not by mistake Unesco world heritage site, but my beloved sim card was corrupted and something like 50 pictures went lost. It’s been few hard days mourning the loss and my idiocy too (I didn’t realised it).

Alrite, time to speak less touristy, more valery.

3 things attracted me most:

1. To see flowers on the park, in spite of the cold weather. That’s promising and so positive you just want to smile. Some rays of light were also pretty much appreciated.

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2. To visit the Schnoor: everything you want to see from an old Northern village, petite version. Bremen is very charming itself, but this small portion gives you an idea how beautiful everything was a century ago. Sloped walls, narrow streets, colourful houses, shops, products, paintings, people, stones, bricks and wood…everything in the smallest square meters ever. Cozy!

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3. Das Viertel: it’s the place to go for young people. Quite Berlin style, laid-back bars, bakeries, a ridiculous amount of restaurants, place to drink the two official beers, Becks and Haake Beck, both super delicious. Talking about drinking, along the river, there are lots of biergarten, the right place to be when sunny!

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Note well: two other places were remarkable:

Neustadt and its deco-liberty houses:

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Teerhof, a kind of isle/peninsula in front of Altstadt, a cathedral of brick buildings in a modern and hipster context. I reckon I wouldn’t mind to live there!

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Let’s end this blog by highly suggesting a weekend in Bremen: people are incredibly helpful and nice, the old part is charming, the city is very quiet but still there are lots of places to hang out. And everything is quickly reached on foot.. Ahoy!