Today was more or less about photography, and it included a bike ride.
I had some ideas for my wide angle lens today. My first shots were at home.
After lunch Janos and I rode our bikes to Königsplatz. I wrote about the 3,200 poppies there in a previous post. On this visit I wanted to see if I could get some more interesting captures with the wide angle lens. When we got there it was buzzing with people and the sun was already too low - got to get used to these shorter days. There was too much glare on the white facades and the shadows were dark. It wasn't a well chosen day or time of day for my intentions.
From there we pedaled to downtown Munich - crowded with shoppers on a Saturday - but we had a goal, the photo exhibition of Blende 1, a Munich photo club. The exhibtion was on the third floor of the Hofbräuhaus. I hadn't realized that there was more to the Hofbräuhaus than the popular and touristy beer hall. But there are dining areas on the upper floors as well, and rooms that can be used for things like exhibitions. I enjoyed seeing what other amateur photog's are up to and getting a look at some original ideas.
That was all that was on the agenda for the day and we were anxious to flee the crowds. But where to ride that wouldn't be just as crowded as the pedestrian zone. I decided to stop by the Old North Cemetery, just one kilometer from home. I've been there so many times, but I always find something that captures my interest. Sometimes it's something I never noticed before, sometimes it's just one of my favorite graves that I photograph again and again, in different light, in different seasons, using different lenses.
A Ride to the Botanical Garden - Again
At least it seemed to me like the loveliest day in autumn so far. It was mild, not too warm and not too cool, the sun was shining, but there were pretty photogenic clouds in the sky, and there was a light breeze to set the leaves sailing from their perch on high branches. The colors at the Botanical Garden were dazzling. There isn't much of a story to tell, but I have pictures.
Today Janos and I again left the bikes at home. We took the bus to Odeonsplatz and walked from there to Marienplatz. I wanted to do some shopping and we both had our cameras with us. It is hard to believe that this is November - the air is so mild, the sun so warm. Not yet necessary to think of hats and gloves and scarves before leaving the house, no cold fingers when taking pictures.
A Memorial to Peace
On a wander through Munich, with no particular destination in mind except perhaps a cup of coffee somewhere, we stumbled upon this art installation on Königsplatz, a sea of red poppies. Poppies are known worldwide - but especially in the English-speaking countries - as a symbol of the countless and unnamed war victims of the two world wars. As a pioneer plant, the poppy often settled very fast on the fresh burial mounds.
November 11, the day of the Armistice Treaty of Compiègne, marks the centenary of the end of the First World War. For this occasion, the Munich action artist Walter Kuhn has transformed the Königsplatz into a sea of several thousand large red poppies made of artificial silk, thus commemorating the millions of soldiers and civilian victims of all wars.
This is becoming repetitive, but I'm not complaining - again a gorgeous autumn day, a balmy blue sky day. I had been planning to ride to the New Israelite Cemetery again for a while now, and looked forward to visiting it in the golden light of autumn. It is a beautiful cemetery with many old graves in romantic stages of decay. However, the inscriptions on the gravestones tell stories that are tragic, not romantic. Some of Munich's Jewish population buried here died before the rise of National Socialism, but many were its victim, others had the good fortune to be able to emigrate, only returning later in life to be buried where they were born.
While I was there I was reminded that photography was only allowed with permission. Several weeks ago I had applied for a permit to take pictures, for non-commercial purposes of course. Perhaps it was wrong, but since I received no answer to my request, I decided to take some pictures anyway. I was apprehended and obediently put my camera away. I'll post a token shot here, otherwise they will stay in the privacy of my hard drive.
On our way to the cemetery, which is in the north of Munich, we made a stop for some public art in Petuel Park. The park itself isn't old. It was created in 2005 on top of the tunnel which was built for the Mittlerer Ring, a noisy and poluting ring road. The park has not only green eyes in a gazebo to offer, but also a mule carrying a heavy load. Part of the artwork was the mule's whinnying like a horse - or does he hee-haw like a donkey? At any rate, recorded sounds of a mule were programmed to play once every hour while the mule, standing on a pedestal, rotated. While we were there it was silent and didn't budge and I'm not sure if the sound and motion haven't been turned off altogether. Actually, I have never seen or heard it perform. I only read about it in the Internet.
On they way back, we passed Schwabinger See, an artificially created lake, and stopped for a look at the sculpture there.
Our ride was approx. 18 km.
... is up and running again. It is a space for notes on my daily doings - walks, bike rides, photo outings, travel. Thanks for reading.