Years ago, when I entered in this new and unknown sector, I encountered lots and lots of frustrations.
An unknown territory opened up in front of me.
On my visits to the depth of porcelain craftsmanship region, I encountered many new faces, players, and artists.
When I found the source of where it all began, it became even more interesting.
Some artists I visited were sitting in tiny makeshift structures, crafting beauty out of Kaolin like nothing.
How difficult their craft is to master became apparent to at my own trials to form something out of clay, or white kaolin.
It was impossible to keep thickness, shape, left alone to paint items that were burnt in the kiln.
It was to change my life forever. In the course of years, I became acquainted with many artists and individuals which became my friends.
They all had something in common: They grew up together, went to school together.
So it was no surprise that my friends showed me some of the greatest of artists which were their schoolmates.
Altogether I was in an artist paradise. The friendship that formed in these close circles is as solid as the porcelain they produce.
Coming out of the kiln, controlled by experienced kiln-masters, just as a thousand years ago, they have lasted a lifetime.
What I noticed during the many years is, these special artists are producing the finest works of art, and they do it as if it was a laborers job.
I have seen hand-pulled carts giving way and beautiful pieces of 2 m in length crashing down into thousand pieces, and I have seen a man pulling a hand truck being smashed on his back with a hard bamboo stool, the latter breaking into a hundred pieces.
All this – and more – I have seen whilst buying art, and whilst collecting it.
And I have seen marriages break up, and ancient art being sold to me as a result of the breakup.
People who buy our art have little clue of the exact origin or the story behind the particular object.
The transport of an item would be enough to tell a whole story: it starts with a 1000 miles by truck from the place of origin to the shipping container, then carries on 10000 miles over the oceans, until cleared through customs and stored in the warehouse.
When customers see those pieces they have no idea where they are from, or who has created the masterpiece.
That is left to me alone, my secret, and my experience gained through many years.
The buyer can only see the immense beauty of the particular item, and then complain about the price, without having the slightest idea about the history behind it.
I know all of it, and I will still love the works art, as I did the first day, sitting with the artists in winter and ice-cold temperatures, warmed up only by a charcoal lit pan placed under their stool.
When I say art is us, I have the artist in mind, the remoteness of the location, the freeze, the transport, the loading, the shipment, the clearing, until it reaches the final destination.
One day I shall not be able to visit these sanctuaries of beauty anymore. And no-one will be following my way of collecting art. It may be too cumbersome for many.
Venice, Padova, Monterosso, Milano, Bolognia, Rome, Naples, and the rest. Who does not know the names.If you love food and art, you will fall in love with Italy. Explore the cites of great masters of Art, such as Titian, Vivaldi, Michelangelo, Raffael.Most intriguing, my visit to Venice always is inspired by exploring the many hidden alleys, where one can find churches, monasteries, chapels.
Passing through one the alleys on a Friday afternoon, you will hear some of the most astounding Friar prayers. Enjoying to discover new beauties in Venice. In an instance you are drawn to the city, arriving, like most of us will, at Venezia Santa Lucia. The Stazione opens to a spectacular view on the Canale Grande.
Accomodation, places of Interest
There are lots of places of all price categories, where to go and what to see. As everywhere in Europe today, one should expect 300 – 400 Euro a day for an adequate place to lodge, food included, double occupancy.When strolling through the marvelous city, one can sense the history of a thousand years, where Marco Polo once took off to reach China (with the difference that took him months of traveling under great endurance). I turn to an alley where everything seems quiet, a tiny alley leading to another labyrinth of hidden lanes.Upon hearing the calming sound from the church of Santa Maria, I enter the the same and immediately chants of prayers engulf me. A Friar’s choir praising God in Latin. One stands still at such calming moments. I stay on to enjoy the calm that has set in. All worldly aspects forgotten, drifting into eternity, mind and soul seem to detach. I believe, thanking god he has given me the opportunity to experience so many wonderful things.The best way to get to know Italy is to explore it by train. And for this reason I wrote a comprehensive travel information page, consisting of links to this wonderful country. In no way complete, this shortcut provide a good starting base for the would be traveler and the experienced traveler alike.Vinoteca Livy, Via Tito Livio 5, Teolo tel. 049 9940482 Open Saturday and Sunday
The geological history of this small group of hills has made contact rocks of different origin and generated cones that bring to mind the image of miniature volcanoes. But of craters and lava flows, there is no trace, this is just an optical illusion. Here we are in the presence of peaks each of which is the result of a discrete geological event.PHOTOSThirty million years ago, deep fissures in the earth’s crust has been expelled a large amount of magma (consisting of dense lavas acid) partially lifting powerful layers of sedimentary rocks of the original seabed, some coming directly in contact with water and the overlying atmosphere. Erosive action of gravity and the weather continued for millions of years to finish the job, bringing to light even basaltic breccias and tuffs of a previous eruptive cycle (Eocene 50 million years ago) .
The shapes of hills
Describing the typical hills of the landscape Euganean operation by the low scientific significance, but useful for reading the landscape, we distinguish three cases: where the lava body was trapped inside the shell limestone, the hills have shaped cakes Profiles bubbles, however, where he managed to emerge from the crumbling limestone base (in most cases) come off massive peaks of hard rock and blackish in other cases, the body hilly magma emerges directly from the alluvial plain, drawing harsh and very steep profiles .The excellent natural Euganean reliefs, despite their small size, nature as proof of its beauty and its extraordinary wealth. The location, type of rock and soil generated by them, exposure to sunlight, climate and the prolonged action of man, enabling the survival of over 1400 species, representing about one sixth of the Italian flora. From a qualitative point of view is striking to see Mediterranean species (arbutus, mastic, cysto female) living in the heart of the Po Valley in close contact with other sub-mountainous or mountainous rare or threatened throughout mainland Italy.For any of them Ruta Padua (species endemic to Italy Haplophyllum patavinum) packages Hills, are the last outpost to the west. Near the hermitage of Saint Anthony is possible to observe a significant station.FOTOGRAFI AFRICASIAEURO
Now I could go on and on with our post about Italy. Fact is you will never have enough space simply to write about this incredible country.I remember our fascinating trip to Tuscany and Umbria last October. This alone deserves a whole book full of posting,however we can only post as much today. Another post will be about the beautiful countryside of Tuscany.Until then we wish you an Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year 2018.May health and luck * both are important – follow you wherever you are.bestAFRICASIAEURO
A long time ago. When we were young, Christmas was something to look forward to. Boring isn’t it.
Each year the same. Coming back again, the feeling of nostalgia. Mother used to bake all these Christmas cookies, sweets, making egg liquor.
Where has all this disappeared to? Are we for real or are we just kidding ourselves. Soon Christmas trees will be all forgotten, relics of a time gone by.
Who cares for Xmas trees in our modern time. Nothing was more exciting when we went into this sleeping little town nestled between mountains :
Watching toys in showcase of the local toys seller, electric model trains zooming in and out of their tunnels.
WE WISH YOU A MERRY XMAS FROM ACCRA
Running in 10 inch deep snow in our boots, fingers stiff from cold. All was part of it.
When Christmas came, the lights on the tree were shining as bright, lit by real candles rather than LED s.
Surely much more riskier than today, yet also more romantic. Trees were real, unlike today. Plastic trees are horrible, to say he least.
The scent of fresh fir needles filled the living room, lights off, we were singing Holy night.
When the Vienna boys quire started singing, we all followed.
Patiently waiting for the Xmas eve meal, we were starving ourselves the whole day in expectation.
In a brown loaf a juicy ham was baked, hot and steaming it appeared when the loaf was finally cut. The Mayo salad was an artist chef’s dream, peas, carrots, potatoes, Lyon sausage ( real one ) cut , pickled cucumbers, nothing was left to chances.
Silent night, everyone was feasting.
Opening presents was always followed immediately.
The hardwood heavy skis that one had to struggle with. Ski boots from real cows leather rather than plastic molded shoes, pairs of thick hand knitted socks came from the home factory.
Grandma knitted thick pullovers from shredded wool or Acrylic. There was no money for luxuries back then.
Winter jackets were not yet insulated as they are today, no hollow fiber, no advanced insulation layers were available.
A beautiful tree was standing in our living room, giving us happiness for the next 2 weeks to come.
Yes we enjoyed Xmas. We waited for Xmas for a whole year.
No extra presents were available, all was saved until that special occasion. It was a real Christmas.
For all these reasons, we still feel Xmas is real. As long as we live we shall feel this way.
Hard to change old customs.
With this we wish you a marry Xmas, happiness and blessings for the coming new year.
Christmas is real. More than ever.
We all need Christ the savior.
Those who don’t believe it now will do so in the future.
READ : XMAS
Two years ago we spent Xmas in Beaune, and Dijon, the Bourgogne, France . Many pictures are unpublished until now. We will put them up sooner or later.