French markets – best ones I know, everything from great fresh cheese to flowers to shoes, clothes, so many beautiful fruits and vegetables. Even if I don’t want to buy anything, it’s just great to hang around, meet people, have a coffee and later a beer and look at the whole “quartier” passing by – that’s what we did last sunday with my friend in Vincennes!
Second day in Paris – I’m visiting an old friend who lives a little outside the city, but still inside the metro circle. I’ve been living at her place when in Paris for almost twenty years now, it just feels like my Paris home. Little streets, trees, roses, Cafés and shops and a huge street market three times a week.
Every day I go to the city, to see exhibitions, shop, have a coffee every now and then, walk the streets or do some bicycle sightseeing.. Today it was the great street market in Vincennes and then Fondation Cartier (a great Bruce Nauman show), then the Grand Magasin “Au Bon Marché”, now collapsed at a nearby Café. Salut de Montparnasse! (Sorry, photos are just made with the iPad, as my photo battery has mysteriously vanished, again, at the very best moment..)
♥ Perfume of lilac and linden trees everywhere. German late spring is really something. Such green and abundance of bloom. At work, we keep the window open all day, to have the smells and the birdsongs as near as possible!
♥ Some great work (and life!) opportunity (if it proves true) in Tuskany – just for some days a month, but that’s exactly what I would love to do: Spend more time at different places I love (and where I have friends that are almost family). Include a little more travelling and freedom and time with fareaway friends in everyday life.
♥ Berlin rocking – I am, as you may have realized by now, a great lover of dance and ballet, and the Berlin dance scene is getting better and better after some years of (relative) lull. New festival and theater directors have taken over, invite great companies and invent interesting festivals. For examples, just check HAU, Berliner Festspiele, Akademie der Künste, and, of course, Tanz im August. From 2016 on, Volksbühne, too!
Maya Plisetskaya, one of the great ballerinas of the 20th century, has died this weekend – in this video she is still dancing, up to perfection in Maurice Béjarts Bolero. (Youtube, for the dance world, is just great. All those testimonials of an art that is passing by and gone after every performance – its rare recordings sleeping and hidden in some archives till 10 years ago!)
First weekend of May in the german countryside – the hight of spring, glorious green, little wild spring flowers everywhere. I’ve passed some time with my family this weekend, one day hiking with my brother, the next with my father (aching knees now..), walking through so very green forests, through bird songs and air full of perfume. Sitting in my parent’s garden, eating white asparagus (that’s wwhat you eat in Germany in may, delicious and fresh, every weekend for the some weeks that it is in season). This evening my train goes back to Berlin, but those last hours I’ll sit outside and just take it all in!
Aren’t those the most beautiful wallpapers? Since I discovered them at Cole & Son, an almost mythical british company, I long for a great wall to cover with the “Palm Jungle”! (For the moment, I’ve made it my screensaver.. ) What I post here is just a tiny little example of their vast, wonderfully crafted and designed collections, all the rest is over here at their website www.cole-and-son.com.
Here’s what I found about the story of Cole & Son: It was founded in 1875 and was, in the early days, known for high quality block printing and for supplying beautiful stripes and jaspes. Their archives own designs produced by J C Crace & Son to furnish stately homes, palaces, castles and theatres throughout Britain and overseas, including the wallpaper for the Palace of Westminster – the amalgamation of the two businesses in 1941 meant that Cole & Son became the custodians of the most significant collection of wooden printing blocks in Britain.
In 1949, Cole’s Design Director created one of the first screen print studios in Europe in response to the revolutionary new Contemporary design movement which gave birth to the wild wallpaper designs of the 1950s and 1960s. Today, their archive consists of approximately 1,800 block print designs, 350 screen print designs and a huge quantity of original drawings and wallpapers, representing all the styles from the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries! Amongst these are some of the most important historic wallpaper designs in the world.
Of their contemporary production, they say: “Our magnificent archive is on occasion the source of new designs within our collections. Designs are carefully selected, adapted and coloured by our designers and printed by craftsmen to produce wallpapers faithful to the character of the original document, yet contemporary in feel.” So true!
A first and a last time – I had never seen (but on video) the dance and performance art of New York choregrapher Trisha Brown
who was one of those who rocked and profoundly changed the dance world in the 70ies and 80ies – now she stopped by in Berlin on her farewell tour. A stream of never-ending abstract movement, meditative, playful, experimental, the beauty of detachment. If you have the chance, go for it!