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Welcome to my Blog!
Anybody, providing he knows how to be amusing, has the right to
talk about himself. -
Not even I understand everything I am ¬Aurelius Augustinus of Hippo
In 2013 I started a series of photo albums on Blurb.com, named '36Exp' (a subject adressed in 36 exposures, a reference to the exposures on most common rolls of 35 mm film: 12, 24 & 36.).
BRUNETTI'S VENICE by TONI SEPEDA | TRAVEL
'Walks Through The Novels (by Donna Leon)'
Follow Commissario Guido Brunetti, protagonist of Donna Leon’s internationally best-selling mystery series, over a dozen walks that highlight Venice’s churches, markets, bars, cafes, and palazzos.
In Brunetti’s Venice, tourists and armchair travelers follow in the footsteps of Brunetti as he traverses the city he knows and loves.
It was a bit of a cumbersome theme for me during my week stay in Venice last month, carrying the book, Google Maps screendumps in a folder, a tourist map plus my camera! So after two days, combining it with a search for relevant bookshops, I gave up on it. But it will be a wonderful companion book for me on future visits to Venice!
Toni Sepeda has been Professor of Literature and Art History in Northern Italy for 15 years. She has
LE GRAND JEU: HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON | PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION
In august 2020 I visited this wonderful exhibition in Palazzo Grassi (@Venice, Italy - 11/07/2020 - 20/03/2021). It was a priority among the sights I intended to visit during this stay there.
Based on a project conceived and coordinated by Matthieu Humery, the exhibition looks at how the work of Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908 – 2004) is viewed by 5 different curators, focusing particularly on the ‘Master Collection’, a selection of 385 images that the artist himself chose in the early 1970s, upon the request of his friends and collectors Jean and Dominique de Menil, as the most significant of his work. Today there are five copies of this extraordinary set.
Photographer Annie Leibovitz, film director Wim Wenders, writer Javier Cercas, the General Conservator and Director of the Prints and Photography Department of the Bibliothèque nationale de France, Sylvie Aubenas, and collector François Pinault have been invited to select fifty works each from the original ‘Master Collection’.
The exhibition ‘Henri Cartier-Bresson. Le Grand Jeu’ will be presented at the Bibliothèque nationale de France, in Paris, in spring 2021.
BIOGRAPHY: Henri Cartier-Bresson was born in 1908 in Chanteloup, France. At an early age, he develops a strong interest in painting. In 1932, after spending a year in Ivory Coast, he discovers the Leica camera. The following year he presents his first exhibition at the Julien Levy Gallery in New York. He travels around Europe, in Mexico and in the United States and takes an interest in directing films. He works with director Jean Renoir in 1936 and 1939 and, during the same period, he directs three documentaries dedicated to the Spanish Civil War.
In 1940 he is taken prisoner and in February 1943 his third attempt to evade is successful. In 1944 he shoots a series of portraits for the Braun editions and in 1945 he directs Le Retour, a documentary dedicated to the repatriation of prisoners of wars and deportees. The MoMA, New York, presents an exhibition of his work in 1947 and, the same year, he founds Magnum Photos together with Robert Capa, David Seymour, George Rodger and William Vandivert. During the following three years he travels in Asia.
Back in Europe, he publishes his first book, Image à la Sauvette, in 1952. In 1954, he is the first photographer to be admitted in the Soviet Union since the beginning of the Cold War. He then travels a lot and decides in 1974 to reduce his activity as a photographer to focus on drawing.
In 2000, he decides, together with his wife Martine Franck and their daughter Mélanie, to create the Fondation HCB, dedicated in particular to keep his work.
KASTEEL (CASTLE) DE CANNENBURGH | HISTORY
Merten van Rossum, (b.circa 1478 – d.07Jun1555) was a military tactician of the duchy of Guelders who became field marshal in the service of Charles, Duke of Guelders.
KASTEEL (CASTLE) KEUKENHOF | GARDENS
Today's Walk in the Park!
'Keukenhof' is situated on the 15th-century hunting grounds of Slot Teylingen, and was the castle's kitchen garden (in Dutch: keukentuin), providing game, fruit, berries and vegetables.
I have visited De Keukenhof, across the road, over the years regulalrly. It is open for visitors each year during the spring and provides for a colourful visit. It also known as the 'Garden of Europe', one of the world's largest flower gardens, situated in the town of Lisse, in the Netherlands.
The last owner, Jan Carel Elias graaf (EN:count) van Lynden (1912-2003), grandson of barones Cornelia Johanna van Pallandt, donated the castle including the 230 acres of estate (ground, woods and farmland) upon his death to the foundation Stichting Kasteel Keukenhof.
It certainly won't be the last time I visited Kasteel Keukenhof! If only to visit the castle itself. Kasteel Keukenhof opens its doors during 'Open Monumenten' or ' Dag van het Kasteel' (EN=Day of the Castle)
There are 42 species of dahlia, with hybrids commonly grown as garden plants. Flower forms are variable, with one head per stem; these can be as small as 5 cm (2 in) diameter or up to 30 cm (1 ft) ('dinner plate').
VENETIAN STORIES by JANE TURNER RYLAND | BOOKS HISTORY FICTION
STRIKE - LETHAL WHITE | CRIME FICTION TV-SERIES
LA MIA VENEZIA by FULVIO ROITER | PHOTOBOOK PHOTOGRAPHER
Roiter graduated as a chemist, but from 1947 he devoted himself to photography, being professionally active since 1953.
After several reportages for some magazines, in 1954 he published his first photographic book, Venise a fleur d'eau. In 1956 Roiter won the 2nd edition of the Prix Nadar with the book Ombrie. Terre de Saint-François.
During his career, Roiter released about one hundred photographic books!
La Mia Venezia was published by Vianello Libri in 1989.
Libri fotografici (selezione) @Wikipedia (IT)
BOX 21 | CRIME FICTION DRAMA TV-SERIES
A young Romanian waitress named Lidia is lured to Sweden with promises of a better life, but is instead forced into prostitution.
7DAYS by DEON MEYER | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
IF THE DEAD RISE NOT by PHILIP KERR | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
Kerr's protagonist is Bernhard Gunther is 36 years old in 1934, a veteran of the Turkish Front and an ex-policeman ('Bull').
NORSKOV, SEASON 2 | TV-SERIES CRIME FICTION DRAMA
LEE MILLER: A WOMAN'S WAR | PHOTOGRAPHER PHOTOGRAPHY
It wasn't until Lee Miller's death in 1977 that her son Anthony Penrose discovered the role his mother had played in documenting World War II.
For a future visit by myself: Farleys House near Chiddingly, East Sussex, has been converted into a museum and archive featuring the lives and work of its former residents, the photographer Lee Miller and the Surrealist artist Roland Penrose.
WALKABOUT | STREETPHOTOGRAPHY
FOAM FOTOGRAFIE AMSTERDAM | PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITIONS
Today at FOAM visited two exhibitions one of Vivian Maier's 'Works in Color'. Already purchased the book when photo exhibitions couldn't be visited for the Covid-19 'Corona' virus.
LINE OF DUTY - SEASON 3 | TV-SERIES CRIME FICTION DRAMA
THE LUMINARIES | TV-SERIES DRAMA HISTORIC FICTION
The Luminaries is a 2013 novel by Eleanor Catton, set in New Zealand's South Island in 1866 during the Gold Rush.
The novel has won many awards and honours, including the 2013 Man Booker Prize. It was adapted into this BBC Two/TVNZ miniseries in 2020.
In 1865 two young adventurers, Anna Wetherell (Eve Hewson) and Emery Staines (Himesh Patel), meet on the last day of their voyage to New Zealand. Staines gives her a a piece of paper with the name of the hotel, inviting her to for dinner. But Anna is illiterate and gets waylaid by one Lydia Wells (Eva Green) who shape events so Anna becomes dependent on her.
Lydia is married to Crosbie Wells (Ewen Leslie), who is out on the gold fields trying to make his fortune.
But she is in love with Francis Carver (Marton Csokas), a former convict.
They hatch a plan to release Carver from his convict past.
Emery never met Anna in Dunedin and sets sail to the goldfields in search of Anna who is firmly on the road to ruin, working as a protitute and on opium.
We are faced with the murder of Crosbie Wells on Maori land outside Hokitita, who after returning with a fortune in gold, has fallen victim to the schemes of Lydia and Francis Carver.
[Wikipedia¬ (Hokitika was) founded on gold mining in 1864, it was a centre of the West Coast Gold Rush. By late 1866, it was one of New Zealand's most populous centres. On 16 September 1867, there were 41 vessels alongside the wharf at Hokitika, in some places three and four deep! In 1867, the port of Hokitika ranked first in New Zealand in both the number of vessels entered inwards and in the total value of exports; principally gold.]
Alistair Lauderback is on a promotional tour to become governor; he has had an extramarital affair earlier with Lydia (knowing her as Lydia Greenway) and is blackmailed by Lydia and Francis to sell his ship to Lydia and Crosbie Wells. Lauderback never met Crosbie and the imposter assigns himself as captain of the Godspeed.
Anna is accused of the murder of Crosbie Wells, who died by an overdosis of laudanum. Anna is an opium-using prostitute and she can't explain why she is found at the murder scene.
Anna is increasingly suspicious of the scheming by Lydia, who has also come to Hokitita, to bury her husband. While in fact she is looking for Crosbie's gold which had been taken from him and has made it to Hokitita in a complicated manner.
Meanwhile, Anna and Emery have met. He is appalled that Anna has become a whore and offers to make her an honest woman, but she rejects his feelings for her for a rescue by Emery would again make her dependent of another man. She intends to steer firmly for her own independency, but the situation only becomes worse for her and she is thrown in jail for murder, awaiting trial.
A stranger arrives in town and he appears to be a lawyer. He intially rejects to put up a defense for Anna as it is a trial that she cannot win. He is also overcome with horror about the supernatural forces between Anna and Emery, for they are 'astral twins'.
A Maori, who is supposed to have been shot dead by Francis Carver in his cabin when he forced Crosby Wells at gunpoint to drink the laudanum, an opiate. Te Rau Tauwhare (Richard Te Are) was outside the cabin and surprised Carver, who reacted by shooting him in the chest.
Te Rau finds Emery out in the bush and brings him to the lawyer Walter Moody, who upon hearing the details from Emery accepts his role for the defense of Anna.
On trial Emery gives a convincing testimony, concocted between Moody the lawyer, Emery and Anna; not quite the 'whole truth and nothing but the truth' but Emery takes the blame for some illegal actions to make the narrative watertight.
While the filming of locations, historic backdrop and costumes is breathtaking, in my opinion The Luminaries were found wanting. The narrative in all 6 epsiodes switched back and forth to two timelines, discernible by Anna's dresses: the pink one for her whoring episode, the black one for mourning Crosbie and the concluding stage.
An occasional flashback I don't mind, but this was quite annoying and unnecessary. It seems the filmscript diverted from the prize-winning book and it has gone all wrong.
The prose of the 1860s is quite colourful and entertaing, but I was soon fed up by Anna's long gazes, the hocus-pocus of astrology and the supernatural effects of the astral twins which saw Anna suddenly able to read and write and both experience bodily harm happening to one another.
Why the lawyer conveniently appears, perhaps also in search of fortune, is not made clear. It is also quite unbelievable that Emery swims to the Godspeed, through a considerable foamy surf; and makes it back ashore again, swimming with a shoulder wound, after the Godspeed goes on the rocks...
It could have been so much better, alas.
LOST WHEELS by DIETER KLEIN | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOBOOK
Strange and isolated places aren't everyone's cup of tea - but they are where photographer Dieter Klein gets to work.
This artful book on abandoned cars in forgotten places truly hits the spot with me. A dedication in superb photography, magnificent.
LEICA Q | DIGITAL COMPACT PHOTO CAMERA
Ever since collecting books of famous photojournalists and street photographers, I am fascinated by the Leica brand. Some 20+ years ago I used a Leica SLR and remember how reliable it was while built as a brick (and as heavy!).
The Leica Q2 has the specifications and price that rekindled my fascination, though comparisons by e.g. DPReview and experts through their YouTube channels indicate that while the Leica scores top marks other similar cameras come close for a (much) lesser price.
I took two similar photos with both cameras today and sat down to compare: the Leica Q ('Typ 116') and the Panasonic DMC-G80.
I am not one to go & show for the biggest, best or most expensive camera (or maybe it is too early for me to admit as much).
Indeed, I would rather have acquired the Leica Q-P, with the red dot changed to black and placed less conspicuous.
LINE OF DUTY, SEASON 2 | TV-SERIES CRIME FICTION DRAMA
Season 2 is called The Ambush.
VIVIAN MAIER - THE COLOR WORK | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOBOOK
Vivian Dorothy Maier (b.01Feb1926 - d.21Apr2009) worked for about 40 years as a nanny, mostly in Chicago's North Shore, pursuing photography during her spare time.
Maier was privat to the extreme. Also in her presentation and dressing
she was seen was as 'typical'. She remains a bit of an enigma for she passed on before she became famous for her photography and can't be asked for what exactly motivated her.
She had hoarded so much stuff, she needed to rent storage space, but she failed to pay the rent for a number of years so the contents were sold at an auction for a minimal amount of money, sight unseen. This included her negatives, prints, audio recordings, and 8 mm film. Some 150 rolls of film had been exposed but never developed.
Mostly known for her black and white photography, Vivian Maier is now an icon in American street photography. Maier’s observant eye as an unknown outsider and as a woman makes her work a significant addition to the canon of photography.
HET IS NOOIT LEUK ALS JE TEGEN EEN BOOM RIJDT by MARCEL VAN ROOSMALEN
Rarely do I feel the urge to laugh out loud when reading a book: Bill Bryson does that to me as well as Marcel van Roosmalen.
In this book we read about a weekend with 'the common man' in holiday park De Kempervennen, on safari with a group of journalists through the open-air museum Volendam, on the train on the way to the wedding of Frans Bauer.
REBECKA MARTINSSON, SEASON 2 | TV-SERIES CRIME DRAMA FICTION
Over the past few years I've read the superb books by
ETCHINGS OF RURAL JAPAN by TANAKA RYŌHEI | ART
Ryohei Tanaka (born in Takatsuki, Japan, 1933 is a Japanese artist. He specialises in printmaking, through etching.
I came upon his work visiting a large exhibition in Japanhouse (Leiden,NL) earlier this year (MyBlog 2020Q1) and was blow away by the amount of detail, nuance in grey tones with only a rare etching with a dab of colour (equally stunning I must emphasize), quite is mind boggling!
In recent years I must admit that I sometimes struggled with some Japanese art and -photography, but with photography by Daido Moriyama (MyBlog 2018Q4), woodblock prints by (e.g.) Hokusai and these etchings by Ryohei Tanaka (also written as Tanaka Ryohei) I am enthused with renewed energy to seek out Japanese contempory art!
It seems the proper spelling is Ryōhei, but I think most gave up on finding the proper code for the Latin letter O with macron... I found it on altcodeunicode.com/alt-codes-letter-o-with-accents. My usual favourite for html keyboard characters is www.freecodecamp.org/news/alt-codes-special-characters-keyboard-symbols-windows-list/ but it failed me this time.
DONKERE DAGEN by MARTIN BRIL | COLUMNIST
Donkere Dagen ('Dark Days') - nieuwe berichten uit het land; Martin Bril
PARIS by PAUL ALMASY | PHOTOBOOK PHOTOGRAPHY
This is a book I recently acquired for the subject of nostalgic streetphotography, for I had not heard of Paul Almasy before. And so pleased I ordered this book! Ca. 116 amazing photographs, a book that will be forever a pleasure to pick up and browse!
Paul Almasy (1906-2003) was a pioneer of photojournalism. For more than six decades he traveled the world with his camera and during this time took about 120.000 photographs.
At the tender age of 17, Paul Almasy left his native Budapest and after various interludes, among others in Vienna and Munich, he ended up in Paris.
LIAR, SEASON 2 | TV-SERIES CRIME FICTION DRAMA
Liar is a British thriller tv-series co-produced by ITV and SundanceTV.
The first series saw Joanne Froggatt and Ioan Gruffudd as two people whose initial attraction leads to far-reaching consequences for them and their friends and families. This series was broadcasted on ITV
The programme was renewed for a second and final series, Liar 2, which premiered on 02Mar2020.
With again sterling performances by Joanne Froggatt (as Laura Nielson) and Gruffudd (as Andrew Earlham), but the entire cast showed no weaknesses.
The 2nd series focuses on a whodunnit storyline involving the cliffhanger of the first series' finale: Andrew's dead body ending up in the marshes; this is where the 2nd series take off after a private pilot spotted the body when the tide was out.
DI Vanessa Harmon (Shelley Conn) who led the investigation in the first series is now suspended pending an inquiry for helping Laura to clear her name and DI Karen Renton (Katherine Kelly) has been dispatced the Metropolitan Police to lead the inquiry second time around. And from the start Renton suspects Laura for killing Andrew.
Laura started dating again but her distrust in men in general sees this breaking up.
Laura's sister Katy (Zoë Tapper) has resorted to drinking for the strained relation with Laura and the seperation with husband Liam and her two kids.
DI Harmon is pregnant but both she and Katy as well as Winnie Peterson, a nurse like Katy who was also raped by Earlham, they all help Laura to find the person who has planted evidence that suggest Laura is the killer.
The amount of energy Joanne Froggatt thows into her role as Laura, the desperation, anger and putting her friends under pressure to help her, is quite astounding.
We also find how Andrew became the serial rapist that got him killed in the end.
The second series is no less than the first series.
GO NO GO by AD VAN DENDEREN | PHOTOBOOK PHOTOGRAPHY
'Go No Go' is photographer Ad van Denderen's acclaimed project on contemporary migration and European border politics.
Over a period of 12 years Ad van Denderen photographed migrants and refugees who were under way to the rich West. He stayed for weeks in squalid pensions in Istanbul, where Pakistanis wait for the human traffickers who will bring them to Greece. He joined police patrols along the border between Greece and Turkey, where it was primarily Sri Lankans who were arrested, and watched how men and women stepped soaking wet from their small boats at night near Tarifa, in Spain, after their rough sea passage from Morocco.
Ever more people make the decision to leave house and home. Aided by their families, they will journey for months, sometimes under dreadful conditions.
Sad to note so little progress has been made to this day by the EU on the subject of this immigration problem. A solution seems not in sight.
CARDINAL - SEASON 4 | CANADIAN TV-SERIES CRIME FICTION
Cardinal is a Canadian crime drama tv-series, which was 1st broadcast on 25Jan2017.
THE LEGACY by YRSA SIGURDARDOTTIR | BOOKS CRIME FICTION NOVEL
Iceland’s Yrsa Sigurdardottir surprised me with a stunning crime novel not featuring the main protagonist from the two previous books I read by her: Thora Gudmundsdottir.
The Legacy is equal parts 'police procedural' and suspense narrative.
SUNSHINE (SUNSHINE KINGS) | MINISERIES TV CRIME FICTION
The story of 'Sunshine' (a.k.a. 'The Sunshine Kings') follows the life of Jacob, a young, aspiring South Sudanese-Australian basketball player who is on the cusp of being picked up by US scouts for the US College league.
BEFORE WE DIE - SEASON ONE | SCANDI TV-SERIES CRIME FICTION
Before We Die (Svenska: Innan vi dör) is a Swedish thriller tv-series which premiered for Sveriges Television on 15jan2017.
Though some of the plotlines seem to disappear without a trace the 10 episodes have plenty of twists and turns, with dark aspects making it worthy of the label 'scandi noir'.
SOMMERDAHL MURDERS | SCANDI CRIME FICTION
A love triangle between Dan Sommerdahl (Peter Mygind), his wife Marianne Sommerdahl (Laura Drasbæk) and their best friend Flemming Torp (André Babikian) occurs as they try to solves killings in Helsingør.
Police investigator Dan Sommerdahl and his wife, Marianne, are celebrating their silver wedding anniversary when Dan is suddenly called to work after a woman is found dead. Marianne once more feels her husband choosing work over her and her daughter.
Dan, Marianne and Flemming have to face each other at work for she is the forensic expert supporting their crime investigations.
While Sommerdahl has promised to be in time for their intimate anniversary dinner, he does not show up. However a friend from schooldays shows up and after much wine the two end up in bed together. Sommerdahl has not the insight that this is a result of many years of neglect and meanwhile there are murders to solve..
Not the best of Scandinavian crime series I thought, dialogues are not always convincing, the love triangle is a bit corny, entertaining nevertheless in a summer romantic sort of way.
LAST RESORTS BY MARTIN PARR | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOBOOKS
Leisure, in all its manifest forms, has occupied Martin Parr for his entire career. But from funfairs to food to flower shows, nowhere is the pursuit of pleasure more nakedly apparent than on the beach.
Martin Parr (b.23May1952) is a British documentary photographer, photojournalist and photobook collector. He is known for his photographic projects that take an intimate, satirical and anthropological look at aspects of modern life, in particular documenting the social classes of England, and more broadly the wealth of the Western world.
Another book by Martin Parr, Small World, is discussed on MyBlog 2020Q2.
SANDSCULPTURES AT MARKELO | ART
A few days ago I visited this fine estate, Markelo (also referred to as Castle Markelo) near Diepenheim, in the province of Overijssel (The Netherlands). The grounds are open for visitors and upon our visit there was the special attraction of 16 sandsculptures on the theme of Dutch proverbs.