Wednesday, April 23, 2014

design museum "red dot"

trying to find the space and time for mini-trips and museum visits - that's what i started in January and each time, i was glad for it. so when i was Essen city earlier this month, for a meet-up, i remembered that there is a design museum not far from there: the "Red Dot Museum". i noticed it last year already, and this time, made time to go there.

the museum is part of an old mining complex which now is turned into offices and museums. here's how it looks from outside (and here's more about the area: comic coal metropolis)

and here's an inside view, 
this is a part of the permanent exhibition 

the thing is, the architecture and the "steam noir" touch of the mining time dominates each space in the museum, which is interesting, but also distracting. and from sheer size, the objects on display are sometimes rather small compared to the halls and elements from the mining past:  

altogether, the museum felt fascinating, a bit overwhelming, and also a bit weird and unsorted (how to design exhibitions …. ?). but it was good to have this extra time. and the question “what is good design” of course relates to so many layers of our days, especially when it comes to the different elements of design, the combination of form and function, of look and usability

a part of the exhibition also focused on "communication design": 

and this was my favourite spot: the white sculpture resembles a paper/note tree.
it is created as a symbol for communication:

Previous museum trips

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

textures of today

today: 5 days to island time
today: catching up forward
today: mowing the lawn
today: sudden rain
today: buying flowers, for the now and here
today: reading about migrating birds
today: the textures of now

the collage above is the current starting page of my photoblog once upon each day. right now, i like the combination too much to continue... so i guess i pause, and continue from the island with moments from there.

other todays... 

Sunday, April 20, 2014

journeys, becoming, poetry, and how to make your soul grow...

the joy of journeys, continued..

this morning i revisited a note from this day in 2011 - back then, "Puertos" went live, the poetry collaboration between me, Rose Hunter and Steve Wing that was sparked as we all travelled at the same time, in different places. the image above is from the first page:  Puertos  [Matagorda - Yucat√°n] 

there also are notes, in a file with the title that still makes me smile, both for its title: "There ist nothing useful for you in this e-mail", and for the reflection on the nature of journeys it includes: "a trying journey --- stuff always goes wrong, right (!)"

and more journey effects:  figuring out which books to take, i browse books and notes, and arrived at the book from Kurt Vonnegut i have since a while, "Galapagos". it might make a good journey read, maybe, i thought yesterday. and was greeted this morning by Vonnegut quotes, in the brain picking newsletter, here's the online version: If This Isn't Nice, What is?

Which includes this anecdote that goes both for moments in life that go right, and for journey moments:
One of the things [Uncle Alex] found objectionable about human beings was that they so rarely noticed it when they were happy. He himself did his best to acknowledge it when times were sweet. We could be drinking lemonade in the shade of an apple tree in the summertime, and Uncle Alex would interrupt the conversation to say, “If this isn’t nice, what is?”
So I hope that you will do the same for the rest of your lives. When things are going sweetly and peacefully, please pause a moment, and then say out loud, “If this isn’t nice, what is?”
From there, i looked for a video, to hear Vonnegut's voice (something i tend to do more and more, out of curiousity for the person who wrote the words).. and arrived here: "Back in 2006, a group of students at New York's Xavier High School were set an assignment “ to write to their favourite authors and ask them to visit the school. Kurt Vonnegut was the only one to reply. " - and the students now turned his letter into a film, with practical life advice and an assignment..: 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Mallorca links, walk, places, etc.

the joy of preparing for island-time:

next weekend, i will be flying to Mallorca again, and am now starting to pick the books i will take, and also plan a bit ahead. last time, i went for some walks, trying walkways i came across. and i visited one of the prehistoric places on the island (and arrived there to find it was closed..)

to have a bit more of a plan this time, i will gather links here in this blog post, some are in German, some in English:
Blogs about Mallorca: seasons, people, plants...

and a photo + link from last year's stay:

island lessons: The Kindness of Strangers
Today turned into a little adventure. The plan i had was: to drive to Arta, to visit the prehistoric ruins of "Ses Paisses" there...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Sky Textures

It's friday - and it's grey and overcast... but i still have this sky photo from last week, from a drive along the "Alb" plateau near here, which also fits the photo friday theme, "Textures":

And here's a highly "Textured" version of the image:  


More skies from everywhere: skywatch friday
And more textures from everywhere: photo friday

Have a beautiful sky week ~

Thursday, April 17, 2014

reading: graphic novels, new poetry, street art book

There isn't real time for longer novels these days for me, but i am reading some beautiful books.

One of them is "The Fountain", a graphic novel set in 3 different times, yet focusing on one of the everlasting unsolvable themes of mankind: that life leads to death.

Then there is "Indefinite Space" - a beautiful + a new indie poetry collection . It includes written poetry, but also visual poetry. I especially enjoy the pieces that reflect on the nature of poetry, like Andrew Topel’s “blueprints-constructing the poem-finishing touches” (that's the open page below). Or Bob Heman "Information":

That do not look like poems even though they are. That resist the
dissector’s scale and the analyzer’s blade.

...and here are the same books as above, but with open pages:

The third book in the photo is an art book, it's about the street art of JR. it's 3 weeks ago now that i visited his in-museum / out-in-town exhibition in Baden-Baden with my sister, who gave me the book as a pre-present that now is a post-present of the trip. It's interesting to see how the same pages now have a different touch after having seen his work in "live".

Here's more about the art trip, and beyond that, the collected art trips : street art, history, and a road trip: JR in Baden-Baden, Inside Out + more trips

There's another art trip blog entry waiting, this time about visiting a design museum. quite a contrast to the street art.


Currently Reading + More Reads:

For 2014, i didn't join a specific reading challenge, but i try to read books / authors from different countries and continents, and also follow the “readwomen2014” initiative. Here’s more about it: 2014 - year of reading women

For more reading notes in this blog, click here: life as a journey with books- and a reading list by regions is online at: World Reads by country

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

swift moment

Today, while stopping at the supermarket, I looked up and saw... flying signs of spring: swallows! The first swallows of the year. So lovely. Or maybe they are “Mauersegler” - "Common Swifts" - the nephews of swallows. But that also would be a first.

I tried a photo, then thought of video, and tried one.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

murphy's law, or: for want of an iDude

The image gives an idea of where i've been in the last days, mind-wise: in a kind of web-bug-matrix. Dealing with a web project that has run off track. (Or rather, "into the woods". that's the excuse the web agency handed us when we wanted to know what exactly has gone wrong, from start. "The first team that worked on it went into the woods with it...")

Anyway. What did Murpyh's law say? "If anything can go wrong, it will."

So it did. At least, so far, no one got hurt or injured. It's just bits and bytes gone wrong. And hours and hours of work gone by, trying to figure out the errors in the system, and the pattern behind them, checking and thinking, and staring at screens a lot...

To humour myself, i browsed the Murphy's law page this morning, after another hour spent catching bugs. The following three lines give an idea of the mess we're dealing with right now:
If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.
Bugs will appear in one part of a working program when another 'unrelated' part is modified.
A patch is a piece of software which replaces old bugs with new bugs.

And another quote - this is a copy of a facebook conversation from a while ago, back then i had to deal with the comparatively nice and easy obstacle of e-book-filing. An obstacle that can be solved in 9 simple steps:


Dorothee: “this. is. hilarious. so i now just was sent a gift e-book from Orange. it's nicely sitting in a folder on my computer. now, how to get this book on an iPad? ... it takes 9 simple steps. NINE. oh my.

Dorothee: i want an intra-computer-communication android.

Susan: You mean one of those little dudes who runs back and forth between computers and makes dinner too?

Sherry: an iDude. and i want a bell to ring everytime i need him.

Rose: I want my own technical advisor and Mac repairman. Repairperson. They don't have to cook. I'll feed them tacos. They can go to the beach most of the day. As long as when they come home they help me with all this technical shit. Any takers?

Dorothee: iDude would be nice. or R2D2 from Star Wars. wasn't he a communication android? 


so currently, the answer to the situation rather is: to turn into my own communication android, and do the bug-analyzing and wading through technical stuff myself.