Local Heart, Global Soul

February 29, 2016

Can Sometimes The Sheer Absence In Decoration Also Can Be Ornate?

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Finally pulling away from the old gasworks in Amsterdam last summer, I spy a bridge that is just as interesting as the old architecture I have been focusing on all afternoon.

It’s the complete opposite in style to the ornate brickwork and wrought iron detail, it’s sleek, modern, steel and bare.

But it strikes me that both styles are beautiful in their own way, both use light and shadow as integral components of their design and form, both have an understated style that grabs your attention.

Maybe “traditional” and “modern” are more closely connected than we like to think. Some say they only like modern, others declare that traditional has so much character than modern pieces ever can.

Usually I can be found in the later camp… my heart is firmly in the world of brick, marble, slate, wrought iron, wood, tile and stone, but I also think that there is a grey area of overlap. Maybe “modern” doesn’t always just mean a featureless grey cube of a building, but can also mean a design that is stylish, graceful and beautiful in it’s own way.

This bridge for me is one of those grey elements between modern and traditional.. the ornateness is in it’s very simplicity.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 28, 2016

A Hen Party Provides An Exuberant End To A Delightful Day…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

When leaving Amsterdam’s former gasworks after our Pacificus visit in the summer of 2015,  I found myself alone by the entrance bridge whilst Himself went off to bring the car closer so that I would not have to walk too far.

I was delighted to suddenly see a group of young women arrive, clearly a “Hen party” with the bride marked out in white and her “Hens” all dressed in black tops and pink tutu type shirts.

They were an  exuberant bunch and when I motioned to them with my camera to sign that I would also like to take photographs of them I got a thumbs up, so proceeded to follow the action as the events unfolded.

There was a boat on the canal as the ladies posed on the bridge and it was clear that one or more people on the boat were also taking photographs.

It was unclear from my vantage point if these photographers were happened to be passing visitors like myself or if they were part of the Hen’s party, but there was a lot of laughter going on, so either way they were having fun. Since I was standing still leaning on my crutches, the bride decided to come to me for a some follow-up shots. Of course there was no opportunity to get her name, but if she should ever see these photographs she is most welcome to contact me should she want the larger definition shots for her wedding album. I wished her many good wishes on her marriage and then, as quickly as they appeared they were gone…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 27, 2016

Reference Library Materials Are Rather Rectangular Again…

I can promise you that this is my last post featuring bricks (for a while at least LOL) … as I explained yesterday these are not only photographs to drool over but also for my reference library for moments when I feel want to draw. (I’m not having too many of these moments these days but I want these to be on hand when inspiration next strikes). The former gasworks in Amsterdam has been as much a delight to me as the Pacificus event we came here to see, the icing on the cake as it were!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 26, 2016

Zooming In On My Reference Library Material…

I shall apologise in advance for these next two posts.  The old gasworks in Amsterdam is a delight for the eye. Both are full of the details that I love so much and all of them feature a little bit of wrought iron and a lot of… bricks! Sometimes I like to (try) and draw architectural things and I need some reference material to draw from. This is therefore a post for my reference files, so that I can learn a bit about light and shadow, perspective and how detail can be achieved.  If you love beautiful buildings then these are also just droolworthy photographs of wonderful detail,  so please indulge me my passion and hopefully enjoy these photographs as much as I do…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 25, 2016

More Patterns In The Beautiful Brickwork…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

After visiting the Pacificus festival in the summer of 2015, Himself and I now head back to the car.

Having covered the rear side of the old gasworks building on our walk in, we now get a chance to see the front side on our way out.

Had I not been told that these buildings were a former gasworks, I never would have guessed that this had been it’s former function.

It’s a huge grand building with a façade that looked more fit to be a school or a hospital than for any heavy industrial use, it’s massive in size and yet it’s not heavy or dark in form.

The brickwork changes as we progress, but the changes are subtle.

The patterns are beautiful and I often wonder why such attention to detail can not be made in modern day architecture, who doesn’t like detail and the character that this sort of thing produces?

The building seems to be undergoing extensive renovation, I’m not sure what it’s future end use is going to be, but one thing is for certain, it has a brilliant future in some new form ahead of it.

I hope that as much of the original façade as possible is preserved for future generations to enjoy.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Some other people were also enjoying the warm summer weather…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 24, 2016

The Café On The Corner Has A Quirky Atmosphere…

Himself and I visited the Pacificus festival in the summer of 2015. The event took place on the site of the former gasworks in Amsterdam, a location new to me and a delight to anyone interested in architecture. As we are leaving we come across a café at the end of the series of buildings, and whilst we are not stopping to eat or drink there, the quirky details around the café catch my eye and of course my camera.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 23, 2016

The Dancing Continues, Traditional And Modern Harmony…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The highlight of our 2015 summer visit to the Pacificus festival in Amsterdam were of course, the dancing displays.

The mood was relaxed with the crowds of visitors being drawn away from the stalls and other exhibits to stand four or five or more deep around the dancing area.

Some knew the songs and sang along, in true Pacific island style it was very informal, both a good and bad thing for photographers because people thought nothing of walking in front of the camera as I tried to film the action.

To any observer who is unaware of how things work in the Pacific, this utterly unstructured way of doing things and the fact the kids wandered wherever they wanted without apparent thought to others would seem very rude indeed, but it’s exactly the way that things are done in the Pacific.

Ceremonies and dancing can cover hours or days for special events so kids wander in and out of the Mwaneaba / marae / Wharenui  / Au / Meeting House/  (all of these terms mean a large meeting hall central to every Pacific island community, the name of this hall changes with every nation within the Pacific but it’s function and importance stays the same).

This relaxed way of wandering in and out of the action can be very frustrating to European cultures but is completely accepted in Pacific Island ones, it’s just a matter of being aware of how different cultures work.  The dancing displays the  amazing and intricate movements, the fitness of the dancers and the gap that has been bridged between traditional and modern musical styles.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 22, 2016

Swaying To The Movement Of A Shared Island Breeze…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

No Pacific island gathering is ever complete without dancing.

The music is a combination of contemporary and traditional, drums feature heavily in providing the beat and the dances are elaborate, with moves and gestures having individual meaning.

Many start to learn these moves in childhood, songs too are passed down though the family with many generations often singing and dancing together.

In the summer of 2015, in the Pacificus festival that took place in Amsterdam’s former gasworks, Himself and I were treated to a brilliant exhibition of both Island singing and dancing.

Every piece of the costumes also have special meaning and sometimes some items such as arm bands are handed down through the generations.

The dancing is certainly something to keep you fit, it’s both relaxing yet complicated, rhythmic yet serene, melodic yet powerful.

Himself and I both love listening and watching Pacific island nations dance, each nation may have their own variations, but it’s like regional branches of a shared language and the underling pulse says “Pacific” to the core.

The series of photographs here are fairly sequential, so if you scroll down a tiny bit quickly you will sort of see these ladies “dance” for you…

pacificus dancing 1e (Small)

pacificus dancing 1g (Small)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

February 21, 2016

Market Stalls Representing The Pacific Islands…

Still at the Pacificus festival that took place in the summer of 2015, Himself and I progress to the many market stalls between the two rows of buildings that are part of the former gasworks of Amsterdam. (I had some lovely close ups of the products but can’t find the camera chip containing them, If I do, I will add them later).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 20, 2016

Pacificus Artworks, A Variation of Styles…

Back in the summer of 2015, Himself and I spent a Saturday visiting the Pacificus festival in Amsterdam. The festival took place in a small section of the former Amsterdam gasworks, where there are many beautiful brick buildings. One of these buildings houses the area where people have been signing a large sign, a tattoo demonstration, with the rest of the area being used to display artworks that are for sale. The large rectangle standing pieces are quite hard to photograph because they have been made on reflective material, some of the other pieces are paintings. Let’s take a look…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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