what I'm doing, what I'm seeing, what I'm thinking

23/03/2011

Adelina's Bucharest

Regular visitors to my blog will know all about my fab Romanian intern Adelina. I've quizzed her often about her country, asking her to describe the architecture and tell me what it's all like - well, now I know, because the last time she went over to Bucharest she came back with a fantastic photo shoot of the city. What a fascinating mix of traditional European architecture and communist post-war - I'm dying to visit! Anyway, read Adelina's interesting commentary and see her brilliant photos - great composition and juxtaposition, as usual! ................

I never really thought of Bucharest as a location I would be interested to shoot, but Kathy changed my mind after I showed her some pictures of the Romanian capital. I started seeing it with different eyes.
I'm not originally from Bucharest, so all I knew about its architecture was pretty much the fact that it's largely comprised of communist apartment-block buildings.
I was however very lucky to have my boyfriend with me, who kindly took me to some of the oldest and most interesting locations in the city.
As a result, some of the buildings I photographed are really different from what you'd expect to find in the capital of an ex-communist country.


What we liked most about these photos is -probably not surprising- their textural quality: scruffy brick walls, worn-down houses and over-grown vegetation.

This is an example of communist architecture that actually shoots quite well. I believe this is because it has a certain rhythm through its linearity and symmetry. Minus the air-con, of course.
That never shoots well!




This used to be a hospital; now it's an apartment block. I like the fact that the original facade has been kept intact, although this is probably due to lack of renovation funds!
I find the bas-relief at the top of the facade to be quite graceful as well.


This is a classical Romanian juxtaposition: caryatids and thermopane glass windows! And of course, the never absent air-con.




There's an interesting and intriguing half-urban, half-rural aspect to the 'skyline' shots I took in Bucharest.


A Kathy classic- concrete planters! I thought she might like this shot. I spotted quite a collection of them on the streets of old Bucharest.






The Academy of Economic Studies in the heart of Bucharest.



Another beautiful caryatid, this time bearing the weight of a classical-inspired column.







I have no idea if these square-shaped cast molds have any functional quality or if they're just decorative. They do make the brick facade resemble a climber's practice wall, though.


A quite bad and decayed example of communist architecture...





The carved wooden columns are representative for native Romanian architecture. I'm not sure where they originate from, but they were certainly very popular here, especially in the country-side.


A dreary shot of a public building which -shockingly enough- is in use.








A good example of an interwar house renovation. I love the blood-red roof!








This type of weather goes on for about four months every year back home. In the summer we have the complete opposite- with temperatures going up to 40 degrees Celsius, which explains the air-con leit motif.
If you ever get the chance to visit Bucharest, I do advise you to try it.
People are really friendly and enthusiastic when they come across tourists.
It might be one of those 'love-or-hate' type of cities, but it will certainly surprise you.

For more information on this article, visit my blog.

When Adelina goes back to Romania (help!!) I'll be commissioning lots more posts from her - that's the only plus side I can see to losing her!


6 comments:

  1. These photos are so exciting.. it reminds me so much of Budapest where we found a real mix of architecture from going on a city tour twice round, walking miles in run down back streets and using a travel pass to go to the ends of several metro lines. I can see why Kathy likes your photos and your eye for setting up shots, it is brilliant you have been able photograph so much of the Sculpture too.. I am glad you are going to keep helping!!

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  2. Dear Kathy

    Just want to tell you that I show some of your work on my blog today. Hope it's okay for you.
    I also hope that you are doing well

    xx
    Lene

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi, love the pictures! I can see that so much of the city is simular to Riga, Latvia were I live now and then. The same dekadent, beautiful shabbines. Annika

    ReplyDelete
  4. Dear Kathy
    I'm so glad that you like my post! There are two links to you in the text I'm writen about you - one to your work site and one to your blog. The text in yellow on my blog is links!
    Have a nice evening
    xx
    Lene

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  5. Thanks so much Lene for the post on my concrete figurines on your blog - it always interests me to find out which pieces people choose to feature! (here's a link to Lene's post: Essence of the Good Life
    And thanks to ROGER and ANNIKA for your comments - Adelina is delighted to have your feedback!
    kathy

    ReplyDelete
  6. Adelina25/3/11

    Thank you very much indeed! Glad the shots brought a bit of eastern-Europe melancolia in the blogging world. it's a small part of world filled with a lot of intense history that's worth visting.

    ReplyDelete

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