Welcome to my Blog!
Anybody, providing he knows how to be amusing, has the right to
talk about himself. -
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.). The books can be ordered directly from the Blurb.com website.
BEST WISHES FOR 2017
Don't listen to the politicians, don't accept information from social media at face value, but find your own course to proceed on, define your own happiness.
Wish you sanity and good health, see you in 2017!
EVEN DOGS IN THE WILD by IAN RANKIN | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
Rankin seems to have difficulty to retire John Rebus full stop and I am so glad! His cantankerous, solitary character is so much more appealing than that of Malcolm Fox.
THE UNWINDING by GEORGE PACKER | BOOKS NON-FICTION
The Unwinding is the right, spooky title for George Packer's epic, sad and unsettling history of the last four decades in the US.
Packer tells his story mainly through five central characters (although one of them isn't a person).
Don't expect a 'big-picture' analysis of forces such as deindustrialisation, the neutering of unions, recessions, dotcom bubbles, the financial crisis, etc. There is no solution either, but the book does offer hope.
The personal profiles are mixed with biographies of the public figures of the time, among them Oprah Winfrey, Sam Walton (of Walmart), Jay-Z, Newt Gingrich, Robert Rubin and Colin Powell.
CWWW.TIBET.CHIN.COM by KADIR LOHUIZEN | PHOTOBOOK TRAVEL PHOTOJOURNALISM
Daniël Kamazine wrote the opening essay, a specialist on Tibet and date/location logged as Nepal 1999. He starts with the statement that Tibet is neither paradise not hell; he compliments the B&W images of van Lohuizen as an excellent illustration of the realities and contradictions in the 'Land of Snow'.
Kadir van Lohuizen subsequently writes in a number of chapters about the travels he made to Tibet, problems in getting there and move around.
It wasn't until 1995 he travelled again to Tibet. He had embraced photography as a profession by this time, but had to travel on a tourist visa for obvious reasons.
Kadir returned in february of 1998 and was shocked by the changes in Lhasa the Chinese had put in place.The winter was one one of most severest in many years, livestock lying dead and farming people desperate to get through these desperate times. Many places were cut off from the rest of the world, travel on the snowy roads is difficult if not impossible. Life in Lhasa is in sharp contrast.
Kadir van Lohuizen (b. 06aug1963) is a Dutch photographer.
ONE OF US (TV SERIES) | CRIME THRILLER DRAMA
Childhood sweethearts Adam Elliot and Grace Douglas get married at the start of this four epsiode 2016 BBC series, 'One of Us'. Grace is very much pregnant.
But very soon we see a druggie walking around in their appartment, wielding a bloody knife, looking down at the dead bodies of Adam and Grace!
This is the story of two neighbouring families, the Douglases and the Elliots, traumatized by the news that their son and daughter have been murdered.
The plot thickens when they hear a car crash in front of their isolated farms and rescue the severely wounded driver, bring him into their home. Only to identify him by images on the tv news as the very likely killer of their Adam and Grace!
What to do with him? And why did he drive up to them in the first place, did he mean to kill them too?
There are a few other story lines to consider.
Adam's brother Rob is stalking the man who raped his girlfriend, Anna. Rob's sister Claire works as a nurse at a hospice and struggles with a request to end the life of a patient she cares for.
Their mother is a recovering alcoholic; their father left them many years ago but Adam's phone bill shows numerous attempts to get in touch with his father from Adam's honeymoon adress.
The police investigator involved in this case has a young daughter with a brain tumor. She resorts to selling lsd to a drug dealer to gather funding for specialized surgery abroad, but there is a backlash to her dope dealing.
Grace's father lives his life according strong religious believes. His wife has a sexual relationship with the farmhand. Their 17 year old son has a crush on Claire and spies her privat correspondence.
The families see their relations eroding fast and find themselves at loggerheads for a shared secret and suspicions, while the police keep probing and other relevant issues are revealed.
Wonderful scenery, set in a Scottish Highland village.
A very entertaining whodunnit, packed with drama.
FUJIFILM X100T | COMPACT DIGITAL CAMERA
I am sure the Fuji X100T is worth its money and that I rather failed the camera instead it failing me. Maybe it was too early for me to consider this change.
ENDEAVOUR SERIES 3 | DVD CRIME FICTION
Shaun Evans returns for a 3rd season of the popular series as the young Endeavour Morse. In 4 new films, Endeavour must deal with the aftermath of the tragic events that left him languishing in prison, and his senior officer DI Fred Thursday (Roger Allam) with a life-threatening injury.
1967 is for Endeavour a year of change, personally and professionally. Departures and arrivals. Entrances and exits...
Reginald Bright, Police Chief Superintendent of Oxford City Police, Cowley Police Station (a very kind role by Anton Lesser) has taken a more caring role of his staff due to the outcome of the Blenheim Vale investigation.
SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME by YRSA SIGURDARDOTTIR | BOOKS CRIME FICTION NOVEL
This is the second novel I've read written by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir and I find myself each time having to get used a little to her different way of writing compared to that other great Icelandic author, Arnaldur Indridason.
KNEES DEEP IN ELECTRONICS CRAP
Right, I got a new PC, the old one was 6 years old and seemed beyond saving.
I hate that job of configuring a new PC! There is always a loss of files, like my email adressbook.
Since a few days I have been reinstalling applications, copying files from backups and reconfiguring the software with passwords, preferences, etc. Trying to get back to 'normal'.
I keep coming across files that were not saved according the latest revision and find folders missing that I have overlooked when sorting my back ups. Crap.
This in the light of reports by readers who get a 'Error 404 - Website Not Found' when going to my website and MidPhase Support, my website host, giving me very mediocre help.
And I also found that my smartphone is sending a daily text to a mysterious number, my laptop connecting to wifi but not connecting to The Web, "DNS Server Not Found" for every website I select.
Knees deep in crap. I seem to be loosing my connection with the 'smart age'.
So while I have a new PC to my disposal, I am fast approaching the day I am going to chuck it all in.
KNOWING CHINA, A TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY GUIDE | BOOKS WORLD
'Knowing China, A Twenty-First Century Guide' by Frank N. Pieke (Leiden University, published: July 2016).
Contemporary China appears both deceptively familiar and inexplicably different. The novelty seems to be that the Chinese system has dictatorship in a working relationship with a market economy.
The book is written in an academic style, rather dry of prose (comparing to work I've read by authors such as Henk Schulte Nordholt), but of considerable clarity.
The above is based on the book description by David Parkin of All Souls College (University of Oxford)
Frank Pieke is an Academic Director / Professor of Modern China Studies at the Leiden University (website)
THE SALVATION - BAD MEN WILL BLEED | FILM WESTERN
I grew up with westerns on telly and in the cinema, but these days westerns are a lot less common. Imagine my surprise now to have come across a Danish western!
The production is an international one, with actors such as Jonathan Pryce, Eva Green and Douglas Henshall (Shetland) but also starring Mads Mikkelsen, Mikael Persbrandt (Gunvald in Beck). Eric Cantona plays a convincing 'baddie'.
Jon's wife Marie is played by Nanna Øland Fabricius, better known by her stage name Oh Land; she is a Danish singer-songwriter and record producer.
So in most respects, if not all, The Salvation (2014) is a Danish film, because it is also directed by Kristian Levring (and written by Anders Thomas Jensen & K. Levring).
Jon and his brother Peter participate in the Second Schleswig War in 1864 and following the defeat of the Danish Realm, they migrate to the USA and settle somewhere 'out West'.
Seven years later, Jon's wife, Marie and his ten-year-old son, Kresten arrive. The family boards a stagecoach bound for their small residence while Peter stays behind. Their coach is also boarded by two recently released criminals, Paul and Lester. Following a fight, the two criminals throw Jon out of the moving coach after which they rape and kill Jon's wife. They also kill his son and the stagecoach drivers...
With great effort, Jon catches up to the coach to find his family murdered. Enraged, he in turn kills the two convicts.
Unbeknown to him, Paul is the brother of Henry Delarue, a notorious gang leader and land baron. Revenge follows revenge...
DCI BANKS | BRITISH CRIME DRAMA FICTION
DCI Banks is a British crime drama series produced by Left Bank Pictures for the ITV network.
In January 2010, author Peter Robinson signed with Left Bank Pictures and ITV to adapt novels from the DCI Alan Banks series for television.
In Sep.2014 filming began in Yorkshire for a 4th series. The 6 hour-long episodes, again inspired by Peter Robinson's books, aired from March 2015 to April 2015.
I have a mixed relation with this series, often under the impression that Alan Banks was portrayed as too emotional for his position. And I was quickly fed up with the problematic DCI Banks - DS Cabbot relation. So when I ran into the series on telly I watched or recorded it and I probably saw most of it, but it is not in my top 5 of crime drama series.
THE ABSENT ONE by JUSSI ADLER-OLSEN | FILM CRIME FICTION
I had read the book, which in fact worked me because I bought this second film of Police Inspector Mørck (an excellent role by Nikolaj Lie Kaas), of the Danish Police Dept.Q, before having had the opportunity to see the first one.
'The Absent One' (Danish: Fasandræberne) is a 2014 Danish crime mystery film directed by Mikkel Nørgaard (da) and co-written by Nikolaj Arcel and Rasmus Heisterberg (da), based on Jussi Adler-Olsen's novel of the same name.
Department Q is the cold case group, very much under appreciated by the entire police force and a bit of a joke among their colleagues; their office sits in the basement of the building, dusty files and bare brick walls.
Inspector Mørck's sidekick, Assad, played by Fares Fares, received the 'Danish Oscar' for his performance as Best Actor in a Supporting Role. In this film we see Mørck getting a secretary, Johanne Louise Schmidt as Rose.
You'll have gathered that I heartily recommend this film!
THE FIVE (TV-SERIES) | CRIME DRAMA FICTION
'The Five' is a British crime drama television series, created by renowned crime author Harlan Coben, as his first original series for television.
Twenty years on Danny is a Detective Sergeant and on a murder scene DNA is found of Jesse. He shares this information with Mark (a lawyer and an investigator into missing persons), who has always blamed himself for not having taken better care of his little brother.
The series is fast paced with new developments (not one but two murders to investigate plus the disappearance of Jesse and abductions of young women), but also has good character development of all those involved. Although we don't really get to know how Slade came to be an expert in certain unlawful activities.
AMSTERDAM 1900 | PHOTOGRAPHY HISTORY
Yesterday's visit to the Amsterdam Stadsarchief (city archives) was very rewarding indeed because of this Amsterdam 1900 exhibition.
In the centre of town dominating structures arose, such as the Central and 'Beurs (stock exchange) van Berlage'.
The catalogue of this exhibition will find a a good place in my photobook collection.
George Hendrik Breitner (b.12Sep1857 - d.05Jun1923) on Wikipedia
BECK (SERIES 6) | DVD CRIME FICTION
Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö wrote a series crime novels, 10 to be exact. Police inspector Martin Beck is the main protagonist in these books.
Martin Beck has aged yet again of course and grows increasingly more tired of his young superior Klas Fredén (a role by Jonas Karlsson), with his pressure for quick results.
In this series #6 we see assistent Oskar return, a role by Måns Nathanaelson, now struggling with domestic issues; and also Elmira Arikan as Ayda and Anna Asp as Jenny Bodén.
Sjöwall and Wahlöö on WIKIPEDIA
A NOBLE RADIANCE by DONNA LEON | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
A Noble Radiance was published by Arrow Books in the UK, in 1999.
The plot: A tractor that carries out some works in a farmhouse at the foot of the Italian Dolomites reveals a badly decomposed corpse . Close to the body is found valuable ring that relates it to an influential family of the Venetian nobility.
Donna Leon (b.1942- in Montclair, New Jersey) is the American author of a series of crime novels set in Venice and featuring the fictional hero Commissario Guido Brunetti.
The Commissario Brunetti novels are all situated in or around Venice. They are written in English and translated into many foreign languages, but not into Italian, at Leon's request.
PARIS MINUIT - VARIOUS PHOTOGRAPHERS | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOBOOK
Most of the images date from the 1920s-1950s, but there are others too of a later date.
In the context of this book, since its range is broader than mere 'streetphotography', the following on Wikipedia may be of interest: Humanist Photography.
RAYMOND CHANDLER & JAMES HADLEY CHASE & STANLEY WEST | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
Decades ago I came across a stack of books at home and found they belonged to my father, who I did not know as a reader. Apparently in the 1960s he took a temporary liking to crime fiction featuring 'hard-boiled' tough detectives and private eyes.
It took a while before I found something on 'Stanley West' on the internet, then I learned it was an alias for a Dutch writer: David Trijbits! I found this quite surprising.
The remarkable thing of the books by Stanley West was that all 53 covers were stolen by the publisher...
James Hadley Chase (b.24Dec1906 – d.06Feb1985) was an English writer.
Raymond Thornton Chandler (b.23Jul1888 – d.26Mar1959) was a British-American novelist and screenwriter.
WEEGEE | GRAPHIC NOVEL PHOTOGRAPHY HISTORY
Weegee was the pseudonym of Arthur (Usher) Fellig (b. 12Jun1899 – d.26Dec1968), a photographer and photojournalist, known for his stark black and white street photography.
Weegee was born in Zloczów (now Zolochiv, Ukraine), near Lemberg, Austrian Galicia.
HOPES AND PROSPECTS by NAOM CHOMSKY | WORLD AFFAIRS
I grew up with the believe that the USA did good, ever since liberating Europe in WWII and helped to restore economy and well being of Europe ever since. A product of my education and upbringing.
The content of the book shows as follows...
Part II - North America
I found Hopes and Prospects not easy to consume: the facts, quotes, references and data stream from the pages like machine gun fire, there is no time for some gentle prose. But the content demands respect and pages are read and reread with a frown between the eyes.
Here are a few excerpts that struck me in particular.
"A basic principle of modern state capitalism is that cost and risk are socialized to the expent possible, while profit is privatized. That principle extends far beyond financial institutions, the current focus after the financial meltdown of 2007-8.
"In September 2009, the Israeli army invaded the North Gaza district south of the town of Beit Laha and kidnapped five Palestinian children on their way home after grazing sheep. Details are reported by the Gaza-based Al Mezan Center for Human Rights.
"Criminal actions by Palestinians, such as Qassam rockets fired from Gaza, are angrily condemned in the West. The far more violent and destructive Israeli actions sometimes elicit polite clucking of tongues if they exceed approved levels of state terror.
"Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz announced that "the current Isralei government will not accept in any way the freezing of legal settlement activity in Judea and Samaria".
"...to Israel's U.S.-backed invasion of Lebanon in 2006, with pretexts that are hardly credible in light of Israel's regular practices of kidnapping, hijacking, and internment in secret prisons, as already discussed.
"Perhaps culpability would be greater, by prevailing moral standards, if it were discovered that Bush administration torture cost American lives. That is, in fact, the conclusion drawn by US major Matthew Alexander (pseudonym), one of the most seasoned interrogators in Iraq. Alexander expresses only contempt for the harsh interrogation measures: "The use of torture by the U.S.," he believes, not only elicits no useful information but has "proved so counter-productive that it may have led to the death of as many U.S. soldiers as civilians killed in 9/11."
"A year after Washington's victory over the Church of the Gospels in El Salvador, the demon of liberation theology emerged again in Haiti with the democratic election of a liberation theology priest, Jean-Bertrand Aristide. As discussed earlier, Washington moved at once to destry the threat, reinstating the rule of the military and traditional ruling elite.
"It turns out that Bush-Baker promised that NATO would not even fully extend to East Germany (GDR). They told Gorbachev that 'no NATO forces would ever be deployed on the territory of the former GDR... NATO's jurisdiction or forces would not move eastward.'
SINTERKLAAS | FOLKLORE NETHERLANDS DUTCH TRADITION
Sinterklaas or Sint-Nicolaas is a mythical figure with legendary, historical and folkloric origins based on Saint Nicholas.
Sinterklaas is celebrated annually with the giving of gifts on 5 December, the night before Saint Nicholas Day in the Northern Netherlands and on the morning of 6 December, Saint Nicholas Day itself, in the (Roman Catholic) southern provinces, Belgium, Luxembourg and Northern France (French Flanders, Lorraine and Artois). He is also well known in territories of the former Dutch Empire, including Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, and Suriname.
He is the primary source of the popular Christmas icon of Santa Claus.
Glad to note there was nothing to be noted regarding the controversy (among adults) surrounding Black Pete... All the children rejoiced, esspecially towards 'Zwarte Piet', calling out his name, because he is the funny, crazy character.
TELLUS | TV SERIES CRIME FICTION DVD
Tellus (a latin word, meaning 'earth') is about a Finnish environmental group led by Eevi Forsman (a role by Minka Kuustonen) and who use increasingly radical means to "save the earth".
A group of young eco-activists, operating as 'Tellus', commit sabotage to companies which harm the environment in one way or the other. Cars are a target too, but a sabotage attempt at a large carpark at the airport fails because Inspector Lokka shows up on a hunch; they abort the mission.
The Finnish language took me a bit of getting used to, for there is not a word that falls familiar on the ear...
All in all I can say I enjoyed the 6 episodes of Tellus, a crime mystery with a Finnish twist.
LEONARD COHEN (1934 - 2016) - R.I.P. | MUSIC POETRY ARTIST
Just last month, he released 'You Want It Darker', an album produced by his son Adam.
Thank you for the music, Mr Cohen!
THICKER THAN WATER | TV SERIES SWEDISH THRILLER
"The tap drips, there are stains … and that’s the appeal of Nordic noir", says Morgan Jensen, the head writer for 'Thicker Than Water', which tells the story of three estranged siblings who reunite at their mother’s isolated B&B as family secrets tumble into the open.
"It’s also the case that something like 'Thicker Than Water' is basically a story about family, and that’s something that everybody can relate to, that idea of terrible secrets lurking beneath the surface".
Thicker Than Water is a Swedish series by the same scenario writer who worked on 'Wallander', the benchmark of all Swedish (crime) dramas. This series is basically a family drama and thriller, not a murder mystery or a 'catch the criminal' - though there is plenty of crime in the background.
Mother Anna-Lisa Waldemar invites her children Lasse and Jonna, both adults, for the opening of the new season to her guesthouse, on Aland, which is run by Oskar, her third child.
Plenty of drama here, secrets unravel, relations being made or broken to maintain suspense over the 10 episodes.
WOMAN IN THE DARK by DASHIELL HAMMETT | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
Samuel Dashiell Hammett (1894-1961) came to prominence in the 1920s with his short stories about the ‘Continental Op’, published in Black Mask magazine.
His longer works, including his five novels, initially began as extensions of these before leading to such crime classic as The Glass Key (1930), The Maltese Falcon (1930) and perhaps to a lesser extent, The Thin Man (1934).
The book, dating from 1933 (my hardback copy dates from 1988), begins in classic fashion with a girl on the run. Sporting an evening gown, one shoe with a broken heel and cuts and bruises to one leg, Luise Fischer staggers to a crossroads and into the first house she comes to.
An entertaining crime story in 78 pages.
Raymond Chandler, often considered Hammett's successor, summarized his accomplishments in 'The Simple Art of Murder':
Hammett devoted much of his life to left-wing activism.
His writing career faltered due to ill health and Hammett died in Lenox Hill Hospital, in New York City, on January 10, 1961, of lung cancer, diagnosed just two months before.
ONBEHAGEN by BAS HEIJNE | PHILOSOPHY WORLD AFFAIRS POLITICS
Reading this book, or essay, 'Onbehagen' this afternoon there was much in there that explained the election of a man like Donald J. Trump as US President, as much as the Brexit, and the rise of populists in the EU in political power.
People feel discomfort, are discontented by governments ignoring their demands, corporations and banks putting jobs abroad and have no consideration for the well-being of the society they do business in.
'Onbehagen' is an excellent book to bring these emotions and changes to proportion, it offers sensible analyses, but there is no happy ending. There is only small comfort in understanding, certainly no happiness.
US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS: DONALD J. TRUMP ELECTED 44TH US PRESIDENT
Donald J. Trump the new US President, unexpectedly defeating Hillary Rodham-Clinton in the race for the White House.
033Fotostad 16Sep-16Nov @Amersfoort | Photofestival
STREETS OF THE WORLD, PHOTOGRAPHY by JEROEN SWOLFS
Streets of the World, by Jeroen Swolfs
On this date 06Nov16 I attended this pop-up photo event, it took place during 3 days in a parking garage.
I am looking forward to receive the photobook on this project.
MICROBREWERY 'TWEE KNAAPJES' | SPECIALTY BEERS
MORTAL CAUSES by IAN RANKIN | BOOKS CRIME FICTION
Both Arnaldur Indridason (from Iceland) and Ian Rankin (Scotland) are my preferred crime fiction authors. I was glad I found Mortal Causes among my backlog of books to read as with both these writers I am running out of titles to read.
AMERICANOS | TV DOCUMENTARY WORLD AFFAIRS
Stef Biemans trails the stream of migrants from Latin America to the USA and documents the hopes and dreams of those who try to enter the US illegally.
Stef walks with these immigrants, talks of their hope to make it for their family who are left behind. The route is full of danger long before they get to try to cross the Mexcian - US border.
It is the largest flow of immigrants. He documents their story, their dreams and reasoning and is confronted by defeat (a body left to rot in the desert or stored in the cooler of a US official) but also the success of those who make it across the border.
A documentary in 5 episodes, full of harsh realities and hope. Really well done and a very pleasant, respectful and sympathetic presentation by Stef Biemans - who lives in Nicaragua and is married to a Nicaraguan woman.
DROOMLAND AMERIKA | TV DOCUMENTARY WORLD AFFAIRS
Americans saw during the recent decades many securities crumble or disappear: the government failed to serve its people and a job was more easily lost than obtained.
A quality documentary!
BANKSY - EXHIBITION in BEURS VAN BERLAGE | ART
While I have a book on Banksy's art and have seen the documentary Exit through the Gift Shop, it was again a great pleasure to visit the expo in Beurs van Berlage (Amsterdam,NL) yesterday and enjoy his work and satire.
Banksy is an England-based graffiti artist, political activist and film director of unverified identity.
NEXT STOP PALOOKAVILLE by INGE HONDEBRINK | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOBOOK
Inge Hondebrink is a committed photographer/filmmaker. In her work, she frequently initiates projects that personally move her.
Through her lens, she brings striking subjects, stories and people to life in a fresh, sometimes unorthodox style.
People are the constant factor in Inge Hondenbrink's photography.
Famous, handicapped, old, young or beautiful each individual poses a unique challenge as a subject, whether in their daily life or when posing for a portrait.
Next Stop Palookaville...
The Greyhound is the mode of transport for America's underclass. Inge Hondebrink (Dutch) travelled 5.000 kilometers on the Greyhound busses and portrayed the passengers she met.
A roadtrip through rugged America.
A fascinating social document.
I had seen images from this project published in De Volkskrant newspaper, but on BredaPhoto Int'l Photofestival (15Sep-30Oct2016) a larger selection of images were on display.
Very appropriately the images (and video) were displayed outside and inside a bus.
I bought the modest sized book to get the full series of pictures.
A powerful project. Pity in most cases the full page spread of a portrait would cut the face in two, losing its impact entirely. Big mistake in the graphic design i.m.o.
BREDAPHOTO INT'L PHOTO FESTIVAL 2016 | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOGRAPHERS
From september 15 till october 30, 2016, the 7th edition of BredaPhoto International Photo Festival took place in Breda, the Netherlands. This year's theme was YOU.
The theme was described as: "After decades of a welfare state for everyone, now has come the time for the flexible and resourceful individual. Many see this as an opportunity and grasp it with both hands. People begin their own start-ups or art projects, seeking crowdfunding instead of waiting for subsidy. Residents improve their own neighbourhoods with small-scale initiatives to strengthen the community feeling."
While this may have been the theme for the selection of the photographers, on most exhibitions I found the working theme emanating mostly (not all) on displaced persons, by choice or circumstance; and perhaps their limit on opportunities or their fate.www.bredaphoto.nl
More images on Flickr.com
EXILES by JOSEF KOUDELKA | PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTOBOOKS
When I went to Rotterdam for the exhibition EXILES | WALLS of work by Josef Koudelka (see below) I selected this book, though I found it hard to make a choice.
The passion for photography, and the life Mr Koudelka led, is quite astounding. Having led the life of an exile, often living rough and sleeping in the open air, he had first hand experience of the uncertainties and dangers which many immigrants face in these present days.
Exiles had to be my first book by Josef Koudelka. In time I hope to add other books.
For more info see item further down this page.
JAPANESE GARDEN on the CLINGENDAEL ESTATE
A visit on 22Oct2016. The Japanese Garden is open only a few weeks a year.
The Japanese Garden on the Clingendael Estate was established by Marguérite Mary van Brienen (1871-1939) a.k.a. 'Freule Daisy' around 1910; she had travelled to Japan on various occasions and gathered ideas and objects. The garden was neglected over time but in 2001 it has been made a protected monument and seems fully restored.
Initially I thought that I would be at a disadvantage going for a visit in autumn. But with a little sunshine the visit was very pleasant.
I am sure I will miss the few weeks in Spring but here's hoping...
More of my images of this visit - www.flickr.com
ATA KANDÓ - I SHALL USE MY TIME | PHOTOGRAPHY
JOSEF KOUDELKA - EXILES / WALL | PHOTOGRAPHY
CLAUDE LORRAIN, CLASSIC ARTIST
Claude Lorrain born Claude Gellée, called le Lorrain in French; traditionally just Claude in English; b.ca.1600 – d.23Nov1682) was a French painter, draughtsman and engraver of the Baroque era.
By the end of the 1630s he was established as the leading landscapist in Italy, and enjoyed high prices for his work. These gradually became larger, but with fewer figures, more carefully painted, and produced at a lower rate. He was not generally an innovator in landscape painting, except in introducing the sun into many paintings, which had been rare before.
He was a prolific creator of drawings in pen and very often monochrome watercolour "wash", usually brown but sometimes grey. Chalk is sometimes used for under-drawing, and white highlighting in various media may be employed, much less often other colours such as pink. These fall into three fairly distinct groups.
The earliest biographies of Claude are in Joachim von Sandrart's Teutsche Academie (1675) and Filippo Baldinucci's Notizie de' professori del disegno da Cimabue in qua (1682–1728).
While the details of Claude's pre-1620s life remain unclear, most modern scholars agree that he was apprenticed to Wals around 1620–22, and to Tassi from circa 1622/23 to 1625. Finally, Baldinucci reports that in 1625 Claude undertook a voyage back to Lorraine to train with Claude Deruet, working on the backgrounds of a lost fresco scheme, but left his studio comparatively soon, in 1626 or 1627.
On his travels, Claude briefly stayed in Marseilles, Genoa, and Venice, and had the opportunity to study nature in France, Italy, and Bavaria. Sandrart met Claude in the late 1620s and reported that by then the artist had a habit of sketching outdoors, particularly at dawn and at dusk, making oil studies on the spot.
In 1650 Claude moved to a neighboring house in Via Paolina (today Via del Babuino), where he lived until his death. The artist never married, but adopted an orphan child, Agnese, in 1658; she may well have been Claude's own daughter with a servant of the same name.
PHOTO ALBUM | TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY
This is my 2nd photoalbum done with Albelli. Since HEMA changed their software and I was unable to access my 18 or so photo albums compiled with their software I gave up on HEMA.
THE ROAD TO LITTLE DRIBBLING by BILL BRYSON | BOOKS TRAVEL TRAVELOGUE
I have read most of Bill Bryson's books and always found them top of the bill in prose, fun and educational. I was glad I came across this one in Edinburgh's Blackwell's bookstore.
Bill Bryson was talked into an update to his book Notes from a Small Island by his publisher, as that was published 20 years ago. This book 'The Road to Little Dribbling' is the direct result. Hence the subtitle 'More Notes from a Small Island'.
At one point, Mr Bryson muses: “In countless small ways the world around us grows gradually shittier…
I quite like his grouchy humor, for it is quite in tune with my own emotions!
The journey continues from south to west to east gradually making his way up north; from the tranquillity of the Cornish fishing village of Mousehole to the turbulence of a soccer match in Liverpool, from the sadly diminished down-market resort of Blackpool to the orderly and unshowily prosperous Scottish tourist town of Ullapool.
I could not agree more how he objects to that single focus on profit instead of investing in well-being, beauty in so many respects, basic kindness, proper transportation, schooling, etc.
The book contained useful information for me personally. I learned of a new booktown, Sedbergh, I think I should visit (I have travelled through Britain 18 times in the past 40 years or so).
STEVE FORBERT @PARADISO 09OCT16 | SINGERSONGWRITER AMERICANA MUSIC
Samuel Stephen 'Steve' Forbert (b. 13Dec1954) is an American pop music singer-songwriter.
MAGNIFICENT SEVEN | WESTERN MOVIE FILM
I quite enjoyed watching 'The Magnificent Seven' last weekend.
I grew up with western movies (and WWII war films), those were the ones I went to the cinema for when I was a youngster. Lee Van Cleef 's Captain Apache, the socalled spaghetti westerns with Clint Eastwood, various John Wayne westerns (though he was getting a bit old and a bit before my time) as well as the 'Italian style Westerns' with Terence Hill (Mario Girotti) and Bud Spencer (Carlo Pedersoli).
FREQUENT FLYER by KINKY FRIEDMAN | CRIME FICTION NOVEL BOOKS
Kinky Friedman--the New York-based, wisecracking, cigar-smoking, country-singer-turned-sleuth, stumbles upon adventure once again in his search for an apparently dead friend from the past.
The book starts weird enough: he is invited to a funeral of a Peace Corps friend, John Morgan, so the Kinster flies off to Cleveland,OH. Except the person in the casket is not his friend John!
But none of the 300 guests, including Morgan's parents, seem to notic anything strange. So Friedman keeps his observation to himself but back in New York he convinces himself he has not gone insane and something is amiss here.
Back home in New York's Greenwich Village, he hears from an Argentinian woman who says she is Morgan's fiancee, and soon Friedman finds himself the target of an unrepentant band of Nazis... nazis, yes Nazis.
So Friedman contacts his friend McGovern, who is a journalist, to do a little digging. Kinky consults his friend Ratso with whom he always has strained conversations. This is New York Ratso, as Friedman also has a friend Ratso in Washington, who gets involved for some leg work. Pal Rambam is for breaking and entering.
Contacting a friend in Texas, apparently residing in an asylum, is called but he mistakes the contact for a plan to go back on tour..
Meanwhile Friedman racks his brain for clues why Morgan may have returned to where they met, in the jungle of Borneo and why Morgan may have gone deeper into the jungle to hunt an elusive white tiger with blue eyes.
Friedman's novels are presumably an acquired taste, I certainly got a little tired of the wise-guy attitude and crazy ramblings, but the weird twists in the story actually get to a point which makes sense. In a way.
Richard Samet 'Kinky' Friedman (b. 01Nov1944 - ) is an American Texas Country singer, songwriter, novelist, humorist, politician and former columnist for Texas Monthly who styles himself in the mold of popular American satirists Will Rogers and Mark Twain.
'Frequent Flyer' was first published in 1989 by William Morrow and Company.
LOOKING FOR LOVE ON THE LEFT BANK by ED VAN DER ELSKEN | PHOTOGRAPHY
Published in 1956, Looking for Love on the Left Bank (jn Paris) is the witness account of an era.
Ed moved around in Paris, after having stayed in Rue des Martyrs he moved to Rue Guisarde 12 in St. Germain des Près.
For the 1950s publication van der Elsken, after organizing his contact sheets, he compiled the first of his three dummies from his archives.
Apparently the idea to use his images as a complete story in a book came from Edward Steichen, then curator of MoMA.
JEROEN OERLEMANS IN MEMORIAM | PHOTOGRAPHER MEDIA
Jeroen Oerlemans (b.1970 — d.02Oct2016) was a Dutch photographer and war correspondent who reported mainly from the Near East and Afghanistan. His photographs were published in Newsweek, Time, The Guardian, International Herald Tribune, The Sunday Times and Courrier International.
He was killed by a sniper in the Libyan city of Sirte.
He studied political science at the Amsterdam University and thereafter photojournalism at London College of Communication.
As a freelance photographer he covered several areas of conflict: Afghanistan, Haiti, Pakistan and nearly all countries of the Near East (Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Sudan, Libya, Syria, Israel and the Palestinian Territories). In his later years he was mostly active in Afghanistan, Libya and Syria.
When not on assignment Oerlemans lived in Amsterdam with his wife and children.
In July 2012, Oerlemans and the British photographer John Cantlie were kidnapped in northern Syria and detained for one week. They were freed by fighters of the Free Syrian Army.
In October 2016 he was on assignment in Libya, reporting for the Belgian weekly Knack. In the town of Sirte heavy fighting was going on between pro-government Libyan forces and the ISIL in Libya.
Oerlemans was wearing a bulletproof vest and he had a helmet on, but the bullet hit him on the side, just at the opening of his vest.
According to his colleague Eddy van Wessel, who spoke on Dutch tv in memoriam of Jeroen Oerlemans, (photo)journalists are on the killing list of snipers these days. In past times representatives of the press were regarded as neutral to the conflict but these days a western journalist is a bonus for the snipers. With his remark that these snipers, with years of experience, can shoot a cigarette from the corner of your mouth, he implied that finding the weakspot of a bulletproof vest was intentional.
RAY BONNEVILLE | AMERICANA BLUES SINGER-SONGWRITER MUSIC
Ray Bonneville did not record until he was in his 40’s but since then he has issued 8 albums, the latest of which is 'Easy Gone'.
Ray was very relaxed here, remarked on his jetlag (what is the Dutch word for jetlag? 'Jetlag', oh, right)!), talked to / with the audience, related how he worked as a bushplane driver in Quebec for a few years but a particular scary flight in the fog made him decide to turn to music for a living; aged 42 he was.
This CD was recorded in Austin with a small set of musicians: Ray plays guitar, harp and sings, Gurf Morlix plays bass and Geoff Arsenault drums. Mark Norvel and Eliza Gilkyson add backing vocals to one track each and on two tracks Ray is backed by Will Sexton on bass, Rick Richards on drums and Richie Lawrence on piano. There are 9 originals and 1 Hank Williams cover.
The album opens with the moody 'Who Do Call The Shots' with lyrics that talk of a “…dark road on this no mercy night”. 'Love Is Wicked' is a tale of suspicions – “A perfume on his coat made her look for the lies he told”.
'Easy Gone' has been described by some as more Americana-style than blues, which may have something to do with relocating from New Orleans to Austin. But the combination of Ray’s world-weary voice, relaxed playing and interesting lyrics has plenty of blues seasoning in my opinion.
SETLIST - In The Woods, Lage Vuursche 01Oct2016
My photos of this gig on Flickr.com
DE VERENIGDE STATEN VAN EVA | TV WORLD MEDIA
Eva Radana Jinek was born in Tulsa,OK by Czech parents but moved with her parents to the Netherlands aged 11. At that time she did not speak a word of Dutch but she became a journalist and an anchor woman on Dutch
television, as well as a bit of a celebrity because of two failed high profile relationships. In particular her relationship with former criminal defense lawyer Bram Moszkowicz sparked controversy.
She finds many people who are at the wrong side of the stick but surpisingly upbeat and motivated, but also hears often disapointment in politics, "Washington is broken".
Eva also has personal encounters: for the first time since 35 years she revisits Tulsa where she was born (the family moved to Washington DC later on) and meets the photographer who documented her birth. She goes to her school where she spent her kindergarten and praises the school(system) for its positive influence on her life, but is shocked to learn how expensive such a privat schooling has become.
One may love or hate the United States of America, it remains a fascinating country while it struggles with important issues at home as well as changes to its leading position in global matters.
UNFORGOTTEN TV-SERIES (1) | TV CRIME DRAMA
Recently I watched on BBC First all 6 episodes of Unforgotten, a British television crime drama first broadcast on ITV (first premiered 08Oct2015).