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Looking Back: My First Exhibition

Exhibition #NewYorkNewYork at the Museum of Photography (Tallinn, Estonia, Feb-April 2018)
Same time last year I was probably elegantly (how else) panicking how my very first photo exhibition will come together. A year later I have finally gotten around to sharing some photos and "behind the scenes" of the exhibition here on the blog (mainly 'cos I did share all the best bits already on Facebook and Instagram).

First things first -  I am forever grateful to everyone who made it happen! (Exclamation marks ad infinitum.)

Here you can read the "official" description of the exhibition. Less officially - I put together everything that I was drawn to at the time (and still am for most part). Urbanscapes, analogue photography, Instagram, time travel, square format, hashtags, neon lights, street photography, DIY, interaction, present and past. I hardly ever go out just to take photographs. Rather when I am out and about I feel like I need to collect the moments around me, so I can savor them, discard them, alter them, investigate them, share them etc.

At the Museum of Photography we had rails underneath the pictures, so visitors could add hashtags to photos. Some of which I had created beforehand and blank "tiles" people could fill with their own ideas. I now own a zip lock bag filled with a variety of hashtags in several languages. I absolutely love that. It's like a distant analogue interaction between me, my photos and people who came to see the exhibition.

All self made. In the dark room and in the less dark kitchen and living room (yes, there's still spray paint residue in my kitchen, most probably). Testing different paints and materials. Deciding on the measurements and making sure there's no dust under the glass (like truly impossible). Shopping for fun things (construction stores and art supply stores... like I really need a reason to visit those). Oh and choosing the photos. Good thing there were time constraints. One of the hardest things is to discard a photo you love, but that doesn't fit in with the others. (It's like democracy - majority wins.)

One would think that framing 13 photos cannot take too long. Wrong. So wrong. Position, dust, position, dust... dust. And not to stain anything. I have all this new found respect for anyone ever having to go through something similar.

So from all that to this. Easy peasy. ;)

What you cannot "see" here is the absolutely fabulous soundtrack my good friend composed for the exhibition. I do hope that one day somewhere the photos and music can come together again. Currently all neatly tucked away in a box in my wardrobe.

Ps. Photos here do no justice to how cool it all looked IRL, even if I do say so myself.


Time Out Sunday

Tsundoku. Sums up parts of my life so well. I had it all under control until I stumbled upon a stand that had old books in Spanish for 2€. I am somewhat doubtful I'll read them all, but I just love them. Also, when the salesperson noticed me with all the books, he came to me, gave me a bag and told to take my time. So I also chose some books in English and French (pretentious much). That's book fairs for me, folks. A trap. Not only that, I also love magazines. The copy of Vogue from Italy is my current favourite photo book. I just love love going through magazine stands at airports. But really, my future guests will have endure me showing them some of my favourite things in Vogue Italia no. 817. Also, the H&M dress I bought is in it. I feel very en vogue (har har).

Blue skies have returned (yay!), but they have brought along some serious winter vibes (nay!). So wintery that wearing what I deem a winter coat was not an overkill. (It is extremely unclear when I can wear my autumn clothes, because now we have leaped from warm spring weather into... winter!)

I had taken notes of what I wanna blog about, but then I realised it's winter time and for my body it's like midnight already, so I just do this mobile shots and random ramble update - to have a reason to share Jakko Eino Kalev'is "This World". His record release gig was love. And I am having some home made chocolate chip & oatmeal cookies.


Time Out Sunday

When life hands you nuts hide them and forget about them! (The less known Squirrel Proverb from Seurasaari.)

They know how to work in front of cameras.

Yet after visiting New York all furry running rodents make me a little jumpy. Totally rat-like, n'est pas?!

So yes, this is my animal therapy update. Happy Sunday!


Abbazia di Santa Maria a Cerrate

I have visited a place that does not have a Wikipedia page in the English language. I am really unsure how to continue. Whenever I think of Abbey of Santa Maria di Cerrate I can smell lavender. It didn't smell of lavender there, but it had the same peaceful vibe. Like a lavender. (Really?! Is that what I am going for here?!) Next to Casalabate and Lecce (Puglia, Italy). We found it by chance. The oasis of peace. Which reminds me that I have always had a soft spot for churches in Italy (well, since that one time I went to Rome many moons ago).

Maybe I secretly wish this place shall never get Wiki-famous. Selfishly so. Somewhere out there (it's gonna be so packed with tourists one day).


Time Out Sunday

Many Mondays are blue, but some are a full on rainbow feast! This Monday I was somewhere between Rome and Termoli having the privilege to ride shotgun. The most magnificent rainbow I had ever seen... just around a corner. I suppose that's what they call the WOW effect. Five days hitting the road in Southern Italy. Those short road trips are like intense power shots (you know, like 'em fancy super food smoothie madness shots they sell at crazy prices at juice bars). So much in such a short time! 

Ps. The rainbow kept following us for a while and yes, there was a moment when we could see small mountain town under a full rainbow arch!  

Ps. Ps. Current state of emotional-religious self-identification: catholic atheist. (What a pretentious conversation opening; goes excellent alongside with death and Adidas tracksuits.) So, here's some wonderful music to go with all the feels. 


Time Out Sunday / Alice Austen

Weeks round here tend to get emotional, so it seems safer to time travel into equally emotional, yet far more inspirational places. (Does the b&w editing look dramatic enough?! Throw in a pair of squeaking floor boards and a drum roll.)

Given opportunity I like to pick a part of city and just roam the streets peeking into people's back yards and such. To have some focus I google what's on the sightseeing radar. Staten Island had been on my bucket list and it turned out that there's a house museum of someone called Alice Austen - a female (street) photographer from the late 19th century. I was sold. Sunny ferry ride, one of the oldest homes in New York City, calm beautiful views over Manhattan and ships. All that and more in one go. Oh yeah, and did I mention - all the crowds went in the opposite direction. (Clap your hands, say yeah!)

She took photos that were ahead of her time. She could have easily been one of the photographers included in the photo history books representing her time. You can see some of her photos here. She knew her camera, she knew her darkroom and she had a helluva time. She took some sharp photos (literally and not so literally). One (yes, including me) shall only hope to have enough sharp (mental) images of one's own. Just enough to stay true (and a little bit extra for an occasional rebellion). On that deep and self-reflective note I shall call it a day. And not just any day, but holiday-yay! (Yes, I am on holiday and it feels fabulous.)