visits on art, design, architecture and literature

Category: Berlin

Azhar: from the desk of the architect ‘dark blue crystals harvested’

In my new section at VK publication,  “Photography Exemplar”  a platform in which  I invite artists that work on the media of photography or architecture to share their experience working on a project, an idea, that it might  develop to a larger narrative or simply stay at the moment.  My second guest is Azhar (Azhar Architecture, London & Berlin ) with his project ‘Space’. Azhar is a multidisciplinary architect. Born in Lahore, trained in London, and shares his time between London and Berlin. All images and text below are courtesy of Azhar.(note from editor VK)


This series of modified images, are about reverting these drawings into “Blueprints”, the original status of their creation, they return to be not descriptive but prescriptive.
SPACE SERIES _ The space race has created such incredible technological advancement and fundamental analysis on human support systems. It strikes me that we still have a lot to learn from that extensive research, not just stylistically but in multivalent ways.  These are for me an optimistic series, to be  extra-terrestrial was the combination of vision and technical challenge.
As an architect, I am often introduced as somebody who creates buildings, which is only partially true. I see myself as someone who devises “instructions”, the process of which is drawings, whether it is a concept sketch, or an intricate 3D model. These plans, sections, elevations, 3D models are the instructions for others to use, contribute, interrogate and build the ‘plan’.
I started experimenting with ink drawings as a child, the technical pens of Rotring and Faber Castell, working with a series of proportional pen thicknesses, in fractions of millimetres, 0.1mm, 0.13mm, 0.25mm, 0.35mm 0.5mm etc. I was enthralled by this proportional thicknesses and this absolute precision.

“Apollo Command Module” used for the Apollo program between 1969 and 1975

“Apollo Lunar Module” which was flown to and landed on the Moon. Ten lunar modules were launched into space, of these six successfully landed humans on the Moon between 1969 and 1972.

“Skylab” launched and operated by NASA and occupied for about 24 weeks between May 1973 and February 1974. Skylab included a workshop, a solar observatory and other systems for crew survival and scientific experiments. Three missions delivered three astronaut crews in the Apollo Command and service module.

“Space Shuttle”, taken from a 1969 plan for a reusable spacecraft, tge first orbital flights occurred in 1982. In addition to the prototype, five complete Shuttle systems were built and used on a total of 135 missions from 1981 to 2011.


“Spacelab” was a reusable laboratory used on certain spaceflights flown by the Space Shuttle. The laboratory comprised multiple components, including a pressurised module, an unpressurised carrier and other related hardware housed in the Shuttle’s cargo bay.

“Columbus” is a science laboratory module that is part of the ISS International Space Station and is the largest single contribution to the ISS made by the ESA European Space Agency. It was launched aboard Space Shuttle Atlantic on February 7th, 2008. It was designed for ten years of operation.
The colour of blueprints, are a “Blue-Black”, I have an instinctive love for the colour. It is my favourite ink in my pens, I draw predominantly with ink-pens, I like the fact that ink is unforgiving, one can only with great difficulty correct an ink gesture on paper.
Blue Black ink is in a way in my blood, my maternal grandfather was an ink maker, amongst other roles. His factory made writing ink in Lahore, where I am born, and from my youngest memories of seeing dark blue crystals being harvested, ready to be made into precious formulas to be sent out in little bottles to scribe, create and record the world, for good or for bad. Ink is a magical, a crucial invention for the evolution of civilisation, and is still wondrous to me, it is an alchemy.
As a boy, I fell in love with the Victorian Aubrey Beardsely, the brilliant young illustrator, the gestures and commitment that he drew, often erotic, his drawings were produced with an absolute commitment to ink, his medium. It was the age of Orientalism, I learnt that Beardsley had fell in love with the great master Hokusai and sought out a large format monograph of the masters work at a local library, I fell into the world of this book, and I have never left.
                                                                            Azhar, Berlin, February 12, 2019

Berlin & New York: lost stories by Truman Capote Are Published

This is amazing!


The news just came out and while I was reading it, I wanted to share as has been published at the New York Times but really it started here in Germany as Four of the stories, believed to have been written from 1935 to 1943, appear in German translations in Thursday’s edition of the German publication ZEITmagazin.

The  Swiss publisher, Peter Haag,  was searching for chapters of Truman Capote’s unfinished final novel last summer when he stumbled upon a different find. While poring over Capote’s writings and papers at the New York Public Library, he  discovered a collection of previously unpublished short stories and poems from Capote’s youth.

Those stories will be seen in German more than a year ahead of the scheduled release of the full collection, a dozen poems and roughly 20 stories, by Random House in English and by Kein & Aber in German. David Ebershoff, who is editing the book for Random House for a December 2015 release, said the decision to publish the four first in German was a nod to Mr. Haag’s research.

Mr. Ebershoff said in an email. “Reading the manuscripts — with his corrections and edits — is fascinating. You can literally see a young genius at work. I don’t use that word lightly, but these early stories show that Capote’s talent and way of experiencing the world was with him from a very young age.”

Even in translation, Capote’s style is immediately recognizable in the short stories, under the titles “Miss Belle Rankin,” “This Here Is From Jamie,” “Saturday Night” and “The Horror in the Swamp,” laced with his incisive attention to detail and themes of longing for love and acceptance, and the transience of life.

Capote, who died in 1984, at 59, is believed to have written these works between the time he was 11 and 19, although not all are dated.

more here http://www.zeit.de/zeit-magazin/leben/2014-10/truman-capote-erzaehlungen-roshani-haag

Mr. Capote said in 1978. ”The thing about people like me is that we always knew what we were going to do. Many people spend half their lives not knowing. But I was a very special person, and I had to have a very special life. I was not meant to work in an office or something, though I would have been successful at whatever I did. But I always knew that I wanted to be a writer and that I wanted to be rich and famous.’ (Albin Krebs on Capote at NY Times, 1984)

what Albin Krebs wrote on August 28, 1984 on Truman Capote after his death ” A Novelist of Style and Clarity”




A visit of wonderful designer Frauke Gembalies; in Interview magazine this week


I met Frauke Gembalies few months ago in Berlin. I was taken by her wonderful collection. All collections are fit for the clients;marvelous materials;  Frauke founder her own label 2 years ago, based in Berlin but all clothes are manufactured with great care in Paris. Amazing pieces; I am proud to have some piece from her last winter collection. Frauke will be the darling of the art world.

In this week’s Interview, enjoy the presentation and also a photo shoot in Paris on vimeo.



Berlin; visit for the 6th Annual Gathering of the Int’l Council Museum Berggruen; David Bowie and Ai Weiwei at Martin-Gropius-Bau and more…

A  two day visit in Berlin on the occasion of the 6th Annual gathering of the International Council Museum Berggruen Berlin.

The celebration started with a very interesting panel discussion “Imagining The Future of the Museums” featuring Hans Ulrich Obrist, Katharina Fritsch, Jeff Coons, TarySimon with welcome note by Udo Kittelman, Director National Galerie-StaatlichMuseen zu Berlin.

photo 3

photo 5


photo 1


diner followed at “orangerie” at Charlottenburg Palace

photo 1 copy


next day a short visit at Martin-Gropius-Bau for an exhibition of David Bowie 

20 may to 10 august 2014

more here https://www.berlinerfestspiele.de/en/aktuell/festivals/gropiusbau/programm_mgb/programm_mgb_ausstellungen.php

and Ai WeiWei-Evidence

Modernism is the original creation of enlightened human beings, it is the ultimate observation of the meaning of existence and the misery of reality; it keeps a wary eye on society and power; it never makes compromises and never cooperates.
Ai Weiwei 1997 (quoted from “Ai Weiwei – Der verbotene Blog”, Galiani: Berlin, 2011)

photo 2 copy

photo 4 copy



Berlin; Gallery Weekend Visit; May 1st-May 4th

A lovely 3 days festivities in Berlin for the Berlin Gallery Weekend celebrating the 10 years.

Friday, May 2nd

Starting with a reception on Thursday early evening at Palais Festungsgraben and next  days to see as much possible starting at the Potsdamer Strasse strip area.  Friday, I started with the venture down Schöneberger  Ufer towards Esther Schipper‘s “Revenos a nos moutons”, a Liam Gillick exhibition that  plays up an illusionistic space between text and structure.  A mirrored room with a monitor installed at its center projects its content ad infinitum using repetition as a means of reduction.

photo 1 copy 4

photo 1 copy

Next door at Galerie Isabella Bortolozzi, Premiered in Berlin is Wu Tsang’s 40-minute, two-channel A Day in the Life of Bliss (2014). This work follows BLIS (played by Boychild), who, according to the press release, “inhabits a ‘near future’ world in which our social media avatars and online personas developed their own hive-minded consciousness called LOOKS.” BLIS is a celebrity-collaborator by day and underground performer by night, who discovers her ability to challenge the Looks. Performance was on Friday evening at 8 pm by Wu Tsang and Boychild but was impossible to get in.

Continued next door, a Phillip Guston exhibition, works  from the late 60s,  at the elegant gallery of Aurel Scheibler. The exhibition comprises of a group of late drawings and works on canvas complemented by two important earlier paintings…the three charcoal drawings in the  show from 1968 and 1969 are important examples of Guston’s new, simplistic language, which he developed since 1966.


Continued at Sassa Trülzch for a wonderful fun exhibition  by Klaus von Bruch , series “In the Future…2008-2014” , Billboards, with a guest in the stair tower:Ingo Günther


KLAUS VOM BRUCH, from the series  In the Future … 2008–2014 Billboards
110 x 140 cm courtesy of Sassa Trülzsch

Continued at a new gallery Cubus-m for a very exciting and careful exhibition, curated by Christine Nippe “Folding Unfolding Space” with the artists Sylvie Boisseau & Frank Westrmeye, Simon Deppierraz, Christina Dimitriadis, Alois Godinat, Elin Jacobsdottir, Andrea Knobloch, Luc Mattenberger.  “In the group exhibition Folding Unfolding Space, at cubs-m the initially abstract concept ‘space’ is addressed. Through the artistic works, altered spatial contours unfold; WIth the help of the utilized media- like film photography, installation, lithography, three dimensional objects and works on paper –  the dimensions of space are artistically examined, negotiated and activated.”  Cristine Nippe, Curator


exhibition view/Folding Unfolding Space/photo @cubus-m

A small brake from the area and took the car and went to VW (Veneklasen Werner)  gallery to the opening exhibition of Huma Bhabha’s first solo exhibition in Berlin

…..the artist’s first solo exhibition in Berlin and features sculptures and collage drawings created in 2013 while Bhabha was artist-in-residence at The American Academy in Berlin. The influence of German art on the artist has never been more keenly felt; German Expressionism, the sculptures of Georg Baselitz and the photo drawings of Arnulf Rainer and Anselm Kiefer are among the art historical referents Bhabha explores in this new body of work….(gallery press)

BHA - installation view 3

BHA - installation view 8

Huma Bhabha, installation view at VW, 2014

Saturday, May 4th

Starting in Charlottenburg,visit Galerie Buchholz at Fasanenstrasse,  exhibition of Lutz Bacher “Homer”. In this exhibition, the artist presents a new suite of 14 photographs entitled “Homer”. This series depicts three off-duty Greek soldiers from the 1970s as they pose in an office, lounge on a couch, and smoke cigarettes on the street of nighttime. Duplications and repetitions of particular photographs upend a narrative progression as the cycle of images seems to stutter, shift, and repeat. …(gallery press release)



Lutz Backer exhibition, photo@galeriebuchholz

Heading to Mitte, a stop at Neugerriemschneider gallery for a Pae White exhibition.

White’s expansive installation in the main room of the gallery is an immersive environment, a highly complex and lyrical composition that consists of twenty-one hovering sculptural models, into which the artist has integrated light sources and various material elements.

photo 2 copy 3photo 3photo 1

Pae White exhibition, photos by permission @vk

a quick stop to Galerie Eigen +Art  on Augustrasse with Time Eitel and at the Lab with Despina Stokou..   Continued at Michael Fuchs galerie with a first solo exhibition of Marco Brambilla in Germany which features a large -scale 3D video installation from the Megaplex-series and a new body of work


3-D video installation of Marco Barbilla, Galerie Michael Fuchs

Berlin;Hamburger Bahnhof_Museum für Gegenwart-Susan Philipsz “part file score”


photo 4

photo 2


Susan Philipsz, Part File Score, 2014, Digitaldruck/Siebdruck, 185 x 145 cm

published photo @Hamburger Bahnhof

Curated by:
Ingrid Buschmann, Freunde Gute Musik Berlin e.V.
Gabriele Knapstein, Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin

For the historic hall of the Hamburger Bahnhof, Susan Philipsz has designed a sound installation that relates both to the building’s former function as a railway station and to the architectonic structure of the hall with its 12archways. The artist connects the former railway station  – a place of departure and arrival, of parting and return – with the eventful life of the composer Hanns Eisler (1898-1962), who lived in Berlin in the 1020s and 1950s.

The artist has created three pieces, based on three different musical compositions for film by Eisler, that play one after the other, each tone of the compositions wa recorded separately in the studio.  In the installation, the tones are distributed among the 24 loudspeakers installed along the entire length of the historic hall. Each loudspeaker is assigned a tone on he chromatic scale, so that each of the instrumental voices becomes spatialized and wanders  through the hall.

more here 

Berlin; Eigen+Art Lab “still (not) moving” 3 artist exhibition, curated by Prof. Dr.Dieter Daniels


A very interesting and challenging exhibition with curator Prof. Dr Dieter Daniels presenting  three positions from the field of Visual Media. photos@courtesy of Eigen+Art Lab.

In their works ,Yvon Chabrowski, David Claerbout, and Albrecht Pischel ask about the interstitial world between still and moving pictures that is newly arising through digitalization and changed cultural practices. Their refreshing indeterminacy opens up a still little-known aesthetic terrain that can be described either as a hybrid between or as a synthesis of photography and film/video. (gallery press release)
Yvon Chabrowski_Schutthaufen

Yvon Chabrowski transforms pictures from the mass media into the reflective space of a new, slowed down temporality. In Dramatische Funde im Schutthaufen (Dramatic finds in the rubble heap), she turns a press photo of a police operation in the ruins of the home that the neo-Nazi terror group NSU burned down in the city of Zwickau into a performance with actors who, caught in a video loop, are caught forever in their search for forensic evidence. 


David Claerbout is the “classic” of this new interstitial world and has been working since the 1990s primarily at the interfaces of photo/film/video and the digital image. With Untitled (Single Channel View) from 1998-2000, we are consciously showing an already “historical work” by Claerbout in dialog with the two younger artists. …..



Albrecht Pischel presents his works in the analog medium of film, but his content relates to painting as well as to photography and digital techniques. The 8-millimeter film “Now is forever New” was shot, unnoticed, with a hand camera in front of Barnett Newman’s original painting “Vir heroicus sublimis” in the New York Museum of Modern Art……

more here 

Berlin; Blain Southern Gallery; Yinka Shonibare MBE “Making Eden”


preview opening; “Making Eden” Blain Southern  opened the first solo exhibition in Berlin by internationally acclaimed artist Yinka Shonibare MBE ; followed by a great dinner at Grill Royal 


photo@courtesy of artist and Blain Southern “Adam and Eve”, 2013

Bringing together a body of entirely new work across two floors of the gallery, Making Eden explores the theme of revolution, drawing a stark contrast between the utopian ideals inherent in anarchic action and the darker realities of its consequences. Particularly pertinent in today’s global climate of social and political disillusionment, Shonibare explores both historical and contemporary cycles of revolution, seeking to demonstrate the destructive patterns of human behaviour that repeat themselves across time. (excerpt from gallery press release)

more here 

…….Yinka Shonibare MBE has been elected a Royal Academician, alongside sculptors Tim Shaw and Neil Jeffries. He joins the governing body of the Royal Academy of Arts, London, as a representative of the category of sculpture. This governing body is comprised of 80 practising painters, sculptors, engravers, printmakers, draughtsmen and architects

more here 



Keith York City

History made interesting


visits on art, design, architecture and literature

Eclectic Trends

Interior Design and Lifestyle Trends

Venetia Atelier

A notebook on art, architecture, film, theatre and nature.

maria sarri Art projects

#art_projects, #public_art, #site_specific, #post_colonial, #urban_art

Η καλύβα ψηλά στο βουνό

Σε κοίταζα μ' όλο το φως και το σκοτάδι που έχω


A personal perspective on human interest stories from an American journalist living abroad

An Englishman in Berlin

Blog about life and culture in Berlin, Germany


bits and pieces that interest me


An Alternative Cultural Daybook

Venetian Red Art Blog

Art, the resplendent light that illuminates the world

visits on art, design, architecture and literature


visits on art, design, architecture and literature


visits on art, design, architecture and literature


visits on art, design, architecture and literature


This WordPress.com site is the bee's knees


gaze at Greece


the new T.A.M.A platform