Face of a Giant Fountain

The Giant in Wattens

The other day I was reading a book about ” Schöner wohnen im Garten” , which is all about simple and DY projects to make your garden homey and yes, infused with lots of creativity. I really wanted to have a small fountain, something with water, lots of rocks, plants in Terra Cotta, envisioned like a oasis zen corner. As I gather my thoughts and ideas, I remember the giant fountain in Wattens in Swarovski Crystal Worlds. It´s world famous called as “The Giant”, which simply looking from these photos is quite obvious why they called it like that!

The Giant in Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens, Austria

The Giant Fountain is designed by and created in 1995 by world famous Multimedia Austrian Artist Andre´Heller. He envisioned this creation to commemorate Swarovski´s Hundredth Anniversary.The giant head peeks out from a hill with a mouth flowing with gushing waters, which actually serves as the main entrance to the Chambers of Wonders inside the Crystal World. It contains different kinds of beautiful art installations and compositions of world renowned artists.The concept was genius, with bringing out the crystal as the key features.From the Artist imagination, this giant travelled around the world and finally settled in Wattens and brought home all treasures from around the world.

He collaborated with different artists, sculptures, and visual artists to create different chambers aiming to “mesmerize” the visitors with glance, shimmer and sparkles.

I´ve heard that its quite famous and one of the main attractions in Tyrol so I was really thrilled to see it with my own eyes.After ourdaytrip in Innsbruck, we went to Wattens. I spent a lot of time glued inspecting it´s mouth, eyes and the whole face is just a pure wonder. Made me wonder just how many crystal pieces were used to accentuate the eyes, it´s eyeball mainly, and the eyebrows up to the nose. It is really impressive work of art.The eyes sparkled even in broad daylight but it´s totally a wonder to be seen at night. As the season changes, the Giant creates different impressions. I have never seen it covered in snow but I´ve seen photos of it and it really looks wonderful. German FAZ called it ” the place of pilgrimage of Amazement”. The original concept of the Chamber of Wonders is based on the historical wonders of the16th century in the Castle of Ambras which aimed to collect universal collection of knowledge .

It´s no doubt that the artist has succesfully achieved it´s design purpose since inside the chamber of wonders are collections of different artistic and original creations based on the concept of using Crystals.It´s so impressive that it makes me itch to visit it once again .In the chambers, world famous Artists like Fernando Romero, Andy Warhol,Niki de Saint Phally, Fredrikson Stallard, famous Indian designer Manish Arora, and Yayoi Kusama and Lee Bul contributed their works to make this place a giant Theatre and stage of Art.

In this place, I was able to appreciate technology even more. The shimmering lights, and every bright sparkle makes this place really special. I am not a shopaholic but then, the crystals are really beautiful and worth the drool.

And yes, everytime I would see a fountain, I would always be reminded of the Giant…!

Until then, Tschüss!

Stranded thoughts in the beach

“…and then, I have nature and art and poetry, and if that is not enough, what is enough?”
― Vincent Willem van Gogh

“Whenever I look at the ocean, I always want to talk to people, but when I’m talking to people, I always want to look at the ocean.”–Haruki Marakami

Today I read in the news that Germany wants to open Tourism soon, meaning anytime in the coming months. That would mean easing border restrictions and allow public travel vacations soon. One friend posted a story about Ostsee while enjoying some drinks buried in the sands. My neighbours wants to book for Turkey and spend 2 weeks in the beach.My new passport had never been stamped yet and it seems like I have forgotten how does it feel to be in an airplane once again…

Then I decided to daydream a bit…

Some fond beach memories are still very vivid in my mind. There are rows of dancing coconut trees, white powder sands, seafoams and waves ,crystal clear turquoise waters and lovely sunsets.Here, time goes in a very rhythmic slow motion but our faces beamed with wide smiles. Sun -burnt skin that lasts weeks to fade out but our hearts are grateful, warm and glad. Spent a long time of waiting and planning as soon as vacation days are set but once my feet touches the shores, my worries are all gone. I always thought,I don´t need much money , all I need is a bag full of sunshine and a heart eager for adventure. Because I know, a day spent in the beach is always good. As long as I am at the beach, I am happy.

Maybe I get a new Henna Tattoo, this time with the same design that I have in my mind.

Adoring the different shades of blues, teal and turquoise colors

In my childhood,I spent most of my beach holidays in my homeland. Growing up, an excursion to the beach is the highlight of our summers. From my previous works, we always have company outing and of course–it´s in a beach resort! The journey to the beach is always a long, tiring one, going through rough roads and far away villages,and the horizon seemed endless. But once I saw the beach glistening from the bright sun, the excitement begins.

Once the weather starts to cool down mid-February, my heart races, excited which beach and island would I be able to explore. As a kid, I got used to swimming in the beach where the sands are ashen black because of the volcanic minerals and rocks that have eroded from Mt. Mayon. Black sand from what I know is derived from cooled lava from numerous volcanic eruptions, perk is that it´s great for exfoliating dull skin. I never knew this before, since as a kid, we´re just used to seeing dark sands and we never thought of it as dirty. Through time, I started discovering other fine beaches, with sandy white shores, and cream shade and full of crushed corals as well.

It´s one of the most marvelous times where we can go night swimming as well and watch the moon reflecting in the pitch black waters.

“Life is a summer, full of fun,
at the beach, under the sun.”

Rugged hills surrounding the beach

The harder you seek, the greater you find” is always true. Some beaches that I have explored required a lot of commuting and travel time, especially ones that are in remote areas and can only be reached by boats or ferries. I remember discovering a secluded island in Palawan by chance. The island that we´re supposed to go is closed so we were offered another place.There´s always a mysterious beauty when it comes to hidden paradises. I wish I have all the time and money to spent to explore them all. In the north, I went to different beaches to watch endless sunsets , cave hunting and yes, made a picnic in the dunes.

” On the beach, you can live in bliss..” -Dennis Wilson

Sandcastles and dreams took my breath away in Boracay Island, Cebu,Philippines
Crystal clear waters in Kayangan ,Palawan

Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Malcapuya Island, Palawan

Having an island all by yourself is quite a luxury. Without the crowds, I can admire this paradise as long as I want.Pre covid , where travelling is free and no restrictions, having a beautiful beach always comes with a price. Crowds are a hassle when you wanted a beach to enjoy freely.Stranded in this island for few hours, I don´t even have the energy to complain about life, it is just too good. I busied myself fondling my feet on the shores, counting the clouds, looking for shells and swimming. We had a packed picnic and I saw our guide climbing the coconut trees to get us some fresh coconuts to drink and enjoy. The smell of the fresh grilled fish is quite tempting. The table is set with different kinds of fresh produced seafoods and fruits.As I turned again my eyes to the sea, I just felt grateful. I wish these moments last forever…

I kinda missed the ripe mangoes, watermelons and scraping the fresh coconut which drips its juices. Probably I would have another round of swim before I decided to took more photos after my camera drained of its battery life. There are banana boat rides, camping, taking a nap in a hammock, and yes, shopping for sea shell jewelries!

In the beach, I don´t care about the time, all I know that as along as the sun is out there, I am free to enjoy. I don´t even bother to wear a watch.I feel alive while floating in the waters, staring at the different cloud formations,amazed by the green foliage and bushes. From time to time, distracted while listening to the waves splashing in the rocks. The weight of the waves which carries me to the shore and the seasalt taste in my mouth is enough to remind me all the goodness of life, because when I´m in the beach, I am free to think of the things that I refused to think.

Watching the boats sailing by

There are countless hours spent sailing and island hopping. I got excited as soon as we put on our life vests and the engine motor starts to roar. I don´t mind the water splash, I am at the beach anyway so I am bound to get wet either. The waters are too inviting, beautiful, glistening and the bottom is really inviting. Snorkeling is a must and I told myself to master my strength to adore the world down there.

What a beautiful world to explore the waters who holds such deep history of wars and trade, the old Japanese ship wrecks , legions of corals and colorful fishes…surrounded with jagged limestone cliffs.

The harder the access, the sweeter the find.”G.J Walker Smith

There were simple meals shared under the Nipa huts. Countless photos were taken from nature and laughing comes naturally.I´ve heard stories about the old tribes and folklore stories of each region, shared by the local guide who is quite humble and proud of his roots. Little did he know that they are super lucky, endowed because of living so close to this beautiful nature.

Life taught me that I should walk more on the seashores, forget wearing your shoes, you need to feel the sands under your bare feet, to lie down on the sandshore and take a nap, maybe built a castle and watch how the waves smash it, and perhaps,if I get lucky, I find a giant seashell to bring home or fill up a tiny bottle with sands…

Someday…soon.

Coron Bay, Philippines

When was the last time you went to the beach?

Have you ever tried diving through shipwrecks?

Life in Colour- Purple

This month, Jude is looking for Purple, the shades and hues from red to blue.When I think about Purple, I can´t help but to think of my Oxalis Triangularis plant and one of my favourite Rock band “Deep Purple”.My Oxalis are my lucky gem in my indoor jungle and I have already handed away so many babies from it. It´s magical to watch them close their leaves as soon as it´s gets dimmer and open it once greeted by sunshine. For me,purple is an ambitious colour, it is solid and whimsical, and always makes an statement. I love to use this hue in my abstract paintings and Galaxy Artworks. Personally, I love wearing purple nailpolish and yes, I have purple sweaters and as a kid I love eating Aubergine which is also of deep purple shade.

And what´s the perk of getting up early in the morning for a run? It´s view like these….purple dawn! better than Prince´s “Purple Rain” !

Lovely purple skies never fail to amazed me, too bad they are fleeting and gone in seconds.I must admit that I dared to be eccentric and love to try to wear purple hair, but then my hair was so dark that it turned into burgundy!

Purple can be yummy too, a favourite homebaked of mine, a slice of delicious Blueberry cheesecake dripping in purple sauce, anyone? One of the most beautiful sights I´ve seen in Purple is when they lighted up Kuwait Towers in shades of Purple and over here, we have a Winter Lounge in Christmas which is solely lighted in Purple lights!

Though Purple is the last color of the rainbow, what would a rainbow be without it? Running on purple pavements is a win but a bunch of purple fresh figs makes me happy.And of course, I can´t complain for the wide array of Purple flowers and blooms, they are notorious of their beauty, scent and they make every garden an envy.

Compliments to Life in Colour series by Jude for inspiring this Post. Tschüss!

Getting to know your Art, messy ever after

How we choose what we do, and how we approach it…will determine whether the sum of our days adds up to a formless blur, or to something resembling a work of art” –Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

I started my art journey when I was 7 or 8 years old. This is as far as I remember.Of course at this age, my preceptions of Art is very limited to crayons and skizzes. I don´t even know what is an abstract art or what is the style of Mondrian.If a child draw something on a paper, whether it´s a circles of colors or a big chump of black pens, it´s always a masterpiece.You need to compliment the child and yes, encourage them.That masterpiece should end up being posted in the fridge or hang in the wall. Every work of art deserves and an audience and applause.

Well, not really.I never have those times.I don´t have any favourite artists at all, since during those times, I can´t recall having many books related to art. I didn´t even know what kind of art I was making. Because of constant move, I lost all my childhood drawings and I don´t have tangible recollections of my old drawings. But then I am sure, I painted a lot of fields,landscapes, mosaic and doll like perspectives.

Getting to know my Art style was hard for me in the beginning. It didn´t came easy. Puberty is also a crucial time and life itself offers daily obstacles to find the person who I want to be. In school there´s always an Art competition but it it doesn´t guarantee of winning always.I am exposed to an environment that doing better in Academics is better than paints, crayons and sketch pads. Drawing is a hobby, not a field to excel. So up to that time, I never really encouraged myself to do better art or even excel in it. I am just bent on at least getting a medal, or at least in the top 5 of graduating class. I could give so many weak excuses but at this phase, I haven´t get to know my art style…no, not yet.

I find this totally different from children nowadays. My daughter had a drawing exhibition at age of 5. She is constantly active in her Kindergaten years both in sports activity and drawing. She draw almost everyday.One time she came to me and said :

Mama, please check in my Math book, in page 61, you will find there something that you will like. There is the famous painting of Wassily Kandinsky, the” Weiches Hart: This painter is also included in the 50 famous Artists Book ( 50 Berühmte Künstler in der Welt).

I said to myself…Okaaaayyy. My God, she´s only 6. How on earth does she knows it?

Does she even knows the art style of Kandinsky?

In the end, she mumbled ” I also wanted to be in that Book Mama…”

I am sure she doesn´t know what she want in her life either.This phase is yet too fragile. The metamorphosis of growth,changing behavious, dreams and attitude and so on seems so infinitely wide.The journey is still far…

Getting to know your own Drama

Getting to know my own style of art came actually late in my life. I am also a late bloomer in everything. The only thing that I am early is when I wake up in the morning because I am actually a morning person.I started drawing more and paying attention to details. I took noted on which Artist´s styles appeal to me and what elements of design is present in my creations. I pushed to maintain my patterns and made my own voice.

The flood of compliments and encouragement came I was reassured. I heard the voice signalling me to continue and hone my brushes and create something unique.I started an Art journal and watch my progress.

Looking back in Highschool I started joing poster making contests.Sometimes I skip it because I haven´t prepared well & my materials are limited. I got intimidated and success of winning doesn´t come quickly. My ideas were so little and I feel insecure of my art.I didn´t know that it requires patience and I haven´t really push myself to get out from my boundaries. I was too busy concentrating on life, studies, and other fields of survival. I got distracted again by the dust of everyday life.

Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life ” …-Pablo Picasso

Then I started to pay more attention to myself.I startted taking care of myself and doing what makes me happy.I searched in my soul and in my creativity bank to polish what I can and what can I do to make it better. I tried experimenting with different mediums and explore other dangerous, risky subjects. It feels more like getting to know what kind of coffee I would like to order, the type of bag I wanted to bring… a journey to being an Aesthetes.

I am always motivated by visual pleasure and I would trade a place inside an Art Gallery and admire the masters.I have dreamt of having an original artwork piece of my favourite Artist. I spend and spend more time and money on art than most people, or other material things.I go to exhibitions and join them If I can afford it and have the time for it…

I took risks, and developing my own art style didn´t come out from thin air.

I am still not even there, I am still a project in motion, a work in progress.

Everyday, I am still getting to know myself and my Art and at the end of every painting session, my hands are dirty.

I am happy though that it´s always messy ever after.

Every artist dips his brush in his own soul and paints his own nature into his pictures..” -Henry Ward Beecher

What type of Art do you love?

Do you still remember what you wanna be when you were 10 years old ?

This post is inspired by Lens Artist Photo Challenge “Getting to Know You, a great subject introduced by the witty Priscilla of scillagrace. If you have time to kill, head on to her page and see the other meaningful interpretation of this Theme.

Until then, Tschüss.

Löwenzahn

Dandelions, return of Summer

Peacock dance and a little bit of Mondrian

Mondrian Art Spring garden Inspiration in the Netherlands

I love anything about Flowers (or Plants in general) , naturally gardening and art. Sometimes I kinda mixed them all together because they really go hand in hand, always together,inseparable.At home I only use two types of home deco, my plants and my paintings, especially my Textured Art abract paintings. For me, a home without a piece of Art is like a house without a soul and without plants, it has no life at all.Sorry, but I just love nature that not having it around is a big sin for me!

I consider it a great day when I had time spent with my plants, and did a little bit of Art. Depending on the mood, I could be so absorbed with it that time really flies.

So let´s talk about Mondrian Art, what is it actually?

“By turning from the surface, one comes closer to the inner laws of matter, which are also the laws of the Spirit.” –  Piet Mondrian

Composition with Yellow, Blue and Red 1937-42 Piet Mondrian 1872-1944 Purchased 1964 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/T00648

Mondrian Art is a form of art defined by Piet Mondrian , a Dutch Artist, and one of the founders of De Stijl (the Style) along with Theo van Deosburg in 1917. They launched an art magazine but soon become a full pledged Art movement.

2017 was the year when this art movement celebrate its 100 years since its founding date. I thought it was clever enough to use it as an inspiration Spring garden design in Keukenhof Gardens. Mondrian Dutch design is quite famous for its simple but strong features. It also includes a style based on pure Geometry, using the primary colors red, blue and yellow with non color shades of black, white and gray.

One thing that distinguish Mondrian from the others is that, it only uses rectangles and straight lines to accentuate harmony and order.

So when I saw this design in Keukenhof Gardens, I know it´s Mondrian! So aside from the Delft Blue inspired spring garden, Dutch knows really how to really wow the crowds. An area of 250m2 rectangular flower beds are filled with gorgeous red, yellow, white Tulips and thousands of Blue Hyacinths.A special feature is the famous chairs designed by Rietveld.

Art should be above reality, otherwise it would have no value for man.”

The Art of Mondrian inspired gardens

Mondrian´s technique is really into abstract paintings and using squares and triangels but actually he loves nature. He loves to paint Trees in particular. His painting style is reducing the form and color to their essence. His works are well known because of his line compositions and planes in black, white, red, yellow and blue are celebrated around the world. Even today, they inspire artists, architects, and designers. His style is very clear in these flower arrangement.

Gerrit Rietveld said, “We must remember that ” Sit” is a verb too.” In 1918 he had a poem incised on the underside of his Red and Blue Chair that read, “When I sit, I do not want to sit as my seated flesh likes, but rather as my seated spirit would sit, if it wove the chair for itself.” The work and the philosophy it expressed became canonical to de Stijl.

Mondrian was actually inspired by Cubism, a movement initiated by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque that used multiple perspectives.Then of course we had more time to admire other things than art.

After I enjoyed some art and nature of course there´s always time to adore some animals in the Animal meadow, particularly the beautiful Peacock. Look at her feathers…isn´t she lovely?

Have you ever watched a Peacock dance?

My painting style is actually not like Mondrian since I don´t use Geometry in my abstract painting, but then I love the primary hues of Blue, red and dark yellow.Using this as inspiration, I created this piece with an image of a purple tulip. Still thinking of putting it in this frame or better be in gold frame…I am still undecided.

Any thoughts…?

I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers ” -Claude Monet

Do you have any particular favourite Artist or painter?

Until then, thank you for dropping by…Tschuss!

Why we love Miffy more than Barbie

Playing with Miffy

Do you know Miffy?

Miffy or in Dutch calledNijntje is a character created by Dick Bruna, a Dutch children´s book author and illustrator .He have written almost 30 books about different adventures of Miffy.His books were translated into 50 languages and have sold more than 85 million copies worldwide.In Holland alone, Miffy is a part of every child´s imagination and childhood.

Well,Miffy is a girl white Bunny wearing a little dress. Before I thought it was from Japan or somewhat similar with Sanrio and Hello Kitty but then I was surprised that it is of Dutch origin. Miffy was created in 1955 in Egmond aan See , the place where Dick Bruna painted Miffy for the first time, so that makes it 66 years old now .

My daughter loves Miffy and grow up with it.I love how simple the character, uncomplicated,and perfect for every little minds.Her books tells about children´s daily activities like going to the zoo, Miffy´s birthday, at the playground, in the snow, etc.The layout of the books is also very simple, with primary colors mostly, plus images of Miffy is so sweet.It is really a book for children. My daughter loved it,she is a voracious reader,and when she found a good book, she´s absorbed with it.

Now that she is 6, she is crazy about Ninjago and Lego but then she reads more further, with topics of History and Science. The truth is she never liked Barbie or any other dolls.One time she was given a Mickey mouse stuff toy but then she doesn´t like it and I don´t know why. I find it funny at first but then I realized that her preference was really not on girlie things.The first time that we have met Miffy was 2015 in Amsterdam . Luckily, it was there that they held the Miffy Art Parade to commemorate the 60th years anniversary .Rows of Miffy statues were displayed right in front of the Rijksmuseum and it was wonderful experience to see different Artist´s interpretation.

But then seeing more of Miffy up close and personal in the Miffy Museum in Utrecht is far more than we´ve expected. If you have kids, I am sure you would love to bring them here.We love the Easter Bunny in Easter, but then, we appreciate Miffy in so many ways.

Here are some snaps I took of our visit in the world of Miffy and her friends in the Museum.

The Miffy school , where children learn some new things everyday.
Just as Dick Bruna say ” Each book begins first with a little idea…
After drawing, children can hang their own artwork in here

The whole place is really a miniature world for children. Everything is built as per children ´s ergonomics and function. It´s quite lovely to walk into this place realizing how great the world is, from a child´s view.No worries, no social distancing,everything is beautiful, safe and yes–no fear of virus whatsoever! Mini houses, kitchen,garden, animal fun zoo, art room, play areas and many more are just some of the fun places where children can experience the basic things in life as they grow. It´s a lovely place where they can feel “I belong here” or” this really fits me..”

This is the first time when we have met “Miffy” , aka Mr. Manhattan , Miffy statue here is painted by Selwyn Senatori, depicting his love for a Good Life, or Dolce Vita.

We´ve got ourselves our own Miffy, the one painted by Mies van Out, “Ik voel met zo” or ” I feel so..”. Funny, but according to Chinese and Japanese Astrology, the author Dick Bruna was born actually in the Year of the Rabbit.

” I create a world that children fill with their imagination…” -Dick Bruna

Playing with Puppets with an audience!

Before Corona, taking videos and photos inside the museum is still alowed, but then nowadays to avoid congestion, it is prohibited. I got lucky that I was able to take some snaps of the museum and how does it look inside.We practically spend half of the day roaming around here and exploring the place.My daughter can´t get enough of each room, so she would go back a few more times. It was not particularly crowded that time so we even have the room just for ourselves.Also, I´ve noticed that there were quite a lot of Asian tourists, knowing that Miffy is quite famous, especially in the UK and Japan.

Children unleashed their energy and hop from here to there and just having fun.It was really a day full of fun and creative playing.

In the Netherlands, Miffy is known as Ninjtje,derived from the Dutch word ” Konijntje“, known as well as le Petit Lapin in French.

While waiting for our turn to enter the other side, we roam around the grounds near the museum.The views around Utrecht is pretty amazing and has a very coolSpring vibes. There are lots of trendy shops along the canal and it is not so crowded as in Amsterdam.People sit by the canals ,families eating toegether, drinking, and enjoying some cool spring sun. We busied ourselves admiring the Dutch gable houses and people watching to kill time.

Our favourite so far was the room where children can dressed up as doctors and nurses and play pretend going to the doctor . She had so much fun wearing all those costumes and I just can´t stop smiling how fun it is to let her go by her own imagination. How sad this simple fun cannot be enjoyed by children now because of Corona restrictions….

I wonder when can we go again to such places without the fear of being infected and enjoy the fun while traveling...

Miffy is practically everywhere!

Of course, there is a Miffy souvenir shop and cafe adjacent to the building .The shop offers almost everything from books, to tshirts to pens and mugs. I love their children´s Miffy necklaces and lamps. It´s really a one stop shop and a great place to shop for souvenirs and gifts. The museum restaurant offers a good coffee and Dutch cakes, organic juices and a wide outdoor play area for kids as well while their parents can have a breath of fresh air. A bonus,they even served Miffy pancakes!When you are in Holland, you´ve got to try their Dutch apple pie, it´s really a piece of heaven!

The girl enjoying some fun outside in the Cafe Centraal on a fine Dutch Spring!
One fine day in Utrecht
Miffy even has her own Van selling Ice cream, a Turquoise Miffy Van.

What a better way to end our trip is having some Miffy ice cream!

Do you also have a favourite childhood Book?

Until then, Tschüss!