Mar 282015

This is another take on the concept of ornament. The place is a glass-covered patio in Vienna’s Palais Ferstel, a rather overcrowded station in every sight-seeing tour in Vienna, home of the famous Café Central. It was built 150 years ago in a neo-renaissance style and was intended as a bank and stock exchange, but only only ten years later it was found too small for its original purpose.

Hard to imagine that the original idea was to “avoid unnecessary luxury”, but then, necessity is vague concept :)

The Song of the Day is once again “Ornament” by Moss. Hear it on YouTube.

Mar 272015

It would be pretty impossible to over-estimate the influence of imperial Roman architecture on occidental art and architecture. Take baroque catholic altars for instance.

They directly imitate Roman palace architecture. Look at the niches for the two saints at both sides of the central picture, look at the columns, this could all have been taken from the imperial palace in Rome or from Constantine’s basilica right opposite the Colosseum.

There was a short intermezzo (well, a few hundred years actually) of gothic architecture, a style that deviated from the Greek / Roman ideals, but everything before and everything after was largely in the same tradition. Isn’t that amazing how styles and ideas outlive their creators?

The Song of the Day is “Ornament” by Moss. Hear it on YouTube.

Mar 252015

Given the not unsubstantial price of the Olympus 75/1.8 and the fact, that the lens’ quality is more than appropriate, it might seem strange that I hardly use it. But then, it is an equivalent focal length of 150 mm after all. That’s nothing you routinely use, or if you want to, you’ve got to get in the mood. Seems like that’s where I am at the moment :)

The Song of the Day is “A Few Fresh Lines” by Red Octagon. Hear it on YouTube.

Mar 242015

The old, narrow railway line wound its way on the other side of the valley. Not that it didn’t have its tunnels and bridges, but both of them were much shorter.

Today we cut through mountains and span across abysses like nothing, and at the same time the landscape that we travel through loses its character and all distinction. After all, most tunnels look the same, don’t they?

Says the traveller. Commuters think of it differently – as I also know :)

The Song of the Day is “Across The Bridge” by The Movement. Hear it on YouTube.

Mar 212015

Tarvisio or Tarvis, as it was once called, is a small town just across the border to Italy. Until the end of World War I it belonged to Austria. In my youth it was the place to go for cheap leather wares, bags, shoes and such exotic things as leather jackets.

Then Austria joined the EU and the Schengen agreement about a borderless European core. At about the same time the highway was completed, with a highway connection from northern Europe down to Italy’s heel. Only a fraction of the trains stopped now, none of them for any longer time, and trucks did not have to wait for up to days to get through customs. Tarvisio began to die.

Today it is mostly focused on winter sports. After all, it’s built into a very shadowy part of the valley and snow tends to stay for a long time. Still, much of the former grandeur is gone, much of the old town has become shabby. And beautifully so.

“Old Town” by The Corrs is the Song of the Day. Hear it on YouTube.

Mar 202015

Usually I have my camera with me, but the first time I recognized the complicated pattern of shadows on this multi-layered fence, I didn’t. Thankfully the weather situation was consistent and I found the exact same light next day. Lesson: don’t leave home without a camera. You might be as lucky as I was, but be warned, regret is the rule, not the exception :)

The Song of the Day is one more time “Complicated Shadows” by Elvis Costello & the Attractions. Hear it on YouTube.

Mar 192015

This is the last image taken in that series. This time it’s Lake Millstatt, one of Carinthia’s most beautiful lakes, taken through a window with an interesting dirt pattern on it :)

The Song of the Day is “The Forgotten Lake” by The Handsome Family. Hear it on YouTube.