As most of you know, it is summer in the southern hemisphere.
But then, when you live in a (mostly) tropical country such as Brazil, summer is practically the only season there is.
Having lived in colder regions of the planet on different occasions, I know how the end of the year can be depressive. So, in order to try to instill some sunny hope into the lives of those who lack a bit of warmth, here’s a selection of summery images by German photographer Matthias Heiderich:
I love the choice of pastel colors and the way they remind us of how prone to fading memories are. What is dark and cold today will only be part of future recollections tomorrow.
I can hardly remember how the cold feels as write…
No judgements, please.
First Monday after Christmas: a time for taking things easy.
But not so easy as to put one’s mind to sleep; stimulation is always the best remedy for a hangover on a thirsty brain.
My choice for the day are the remarkable The Dø:
I’ve had my eyes and ears on this great Finnish/French duo ever since they first appeared in Paris when I was living there. And they still manage to get my attention.
Enticing music, provoking visuals. Just what I need.
When it comes to family reunions and a lovely excuse for eating delicious foods, I’m all for Christmas.
And I do love the fact that most people use pagan symbols and rituals to celebrate a supposedly Christian holiday (the Catholic church was most clever in reusing those symbols for their purpose).
One of the most interesting ones, which originally stood for fertility and life through cold winters, is the Christmas tree.
So, to celebrate the holiday, here’s a selection of my five favorite Christmas trees as conceived yearly by contemporary artists for Tate Britain:
And don’t forget to question and query about the symbols you choose.
On a recent trip to Porto Alegre, I was lucky enough to discover the work of a young Brazilian artist whose photography installations have completely won me over: Marcelo Moscheta.
Moscheta was granted a scholarship by the Iberê Camargo Foundation to expand and promote his art through studies and exhibitions abroad.
His remarkable work creates new horizons through the envisaging of space broadening using pictures.
I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on his trajectory.
My love and admiration for PJ Harvey is boundless as it is endless.
For every song in her upcoming album (Let England Shake) there will be a short film directed by award-winning photographer Seamus Murphy.
The first one is The Last Living Rose:
I love it when two creative minds unite in favor of a more thorough and dynamic art form.
It almost leaves me speechless.
I’m back from my well-deserved yet short vacations. I had a lovely time in Southern Brazil then headed for unbelievably hot Rio de Janeiro for some beach/culture time.
But then this is Christmas week and with it comes that holiday feeling, which means less working and even more unwinding.
What shall we do? Enjoy it with some music:
The Suzan is a Japanese all-girl electronica pop group with a twist of CSS I’m delighted to listen to.
Japan has in the past produced quite a few good pop acts, such as the unforgettable Pizzicato Five. Who remembers this song?
To start the week on a happy note.
This is dedicated to all those boys I’ve ever loved in my life but who were unfortunately out of my league:
I’ve got this heart-breaking tendency to fall for lovely sweet nerdy straight guys only to be left wondering how their lives would be good if they could know the depths of my love. (My mind, my rules)
They kind of always end up becoming my friends but, you know,
I wish they were my boyfriend.
I have always believed that prejudice is caused by lack of knowledge.
Once one truly gets to know something that is different, it has a chance of becoming familiar and thus much less frightening.
I went to an exhibition on Islamic Art last weekend in Rio and it was very obvious how little people know about its multiple cultural aspects. We westerns tend to group Islam under a single mass of people – which couldn’t be farther from reality.
Not only does Islamic Art excel in its use of geometrical shapes and floral patterns, it also shows a delightful emphasis on calligraphy and the importance of handwriting in its presentation.
I love the way modern artists draw inspiration from these sources – scarcely known in western societies, I dare say.
Like Shezad Dawood:
This contemporary British artist cleverly uses elements commonly associated with the modern world with century-old artistic heritage to create art that questions general views on Islam and on religion.
Although religion may play an ambiguous role in the shaping of societies and even in the spreading of prejudices, it is undeniable that it is a reflection of culture as much as it is part of it.
Knowing its various sides can help us all build a world where people are more important than what their belief system might be.
As for the arts, as M.I.A. once said: trend-setters make things better.
Hermanos Inglesos has become the perfect soundtrack for my vacations.
I’m taking some 10 days off to slow down and enjoy the summer.
I’ll still be posting, but a little less often.
It’s time to unwind.
Isn’t it great when one of your favorite bands produces offspring in one way or another?
A member of the übercool act The xx, the humbly self-entitled Jamie XX has been getting a lot of my attention. A taste:
The project apart from his mother band called We’re New Here is to be released in Feb 2011.