Welcome to my blog! Here I share my thoughts about photography in general and my pictures in particular, and sometimes also about the world as it is… or could be.
“Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high
There’s a land that I heard of
Once in a lullaby”
Edgar Yipsel “Yip” Harburg, Over the Rainbow, 1939,
sung by Judy Garland in the movie “The Wizard of Oz”
In Beijing again. It is still really hot here, but most of the time the air is clear and the skies are blue. I love Beijing’s temples, I feel transported into a world long gone by. Staying away from major tourist hot spots or visiting them at less crowded times, I can still feel a hint of old Beijing. I find myself a quiet spot, inhale the atmosphere, take a look at all the beautiful buildings, trees, flowers, and places of worship. And of course I take my camera and try to capture these moments.
Yesterday, I visited the Temple of Confucius (北京孔廟, Běijīng Kǒngmiào), which is more of a museum than a temple these days and also a wonderful place not only for people who want to learn more about Confucianism. We had walked there along the river, enjoying another wonderful summer day, and were in the middle of the compound when all of the sudden the sky turned grey with clouds, a wind got up, and the birds fluttered about nervously. Then there was thunder, some rain, and after a little while, the clouds began to disappear again. And when the sun broke through, we saw a wonderful double rainbow and the light casted a spell over everyone and everything.
“Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming,
we lose the excitement of possibilities.
Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.”
I am so excited! I am now represented by Agora Gallery in New York. Agora is a contemporary art gallery founded in 1984 and located in Chelsea, New York’s gallery district. In ancient Greek cities, the agora was a central gathering place and also a marketplace. And this is what Agora Gallery is as well: a meeting place for artists, art lovers, and collectors as well as a place to sell and buy art.
Angela Di Bello, the gallery’s director, said: “I feel that Gabriele’s distinctive expression will resonate well at Agora Gallery, with our art buyers, media contacts and our local and international viewing audience.”
You will soon find some of my photographs on Agora Gallery’s fine art sales website and there will also be an exhibition in early 2017. More news on that later… For now, I just wanted to share these new and sooo very exciting developments!
“Our mind is like a cloudy sky, in essence clear and pure but overcast by the clouds of delusions. Just as the thickest clouds eventually disperse, so too even the heaviest delusions can be removed from our mind (…), and we shall experience the supreme happiness of full enlightenment.”
Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, Eight Steps to Happiness: The Buddhist Way of Loving Kindness, 2000, p. 1
I’ve said before that I am absolutely fascinated by all sorts of skies and could spend hours watching clouds. I know that I am not alone with that and now a friend told me that in Buddhism, the sky plays an important role as well.
Within Tibetan Buddhism for example, there exists a meditation technique called sky gazing where you look into a preferably blue sky with open eyes allowing your thoughts to pass by like clouds. Gazing into the skies, you become aware of the vast open space and can reconnect with the natural state of existence, and can eventually—according to Buddhist teachings—achieve enlightenment.
So, go out there and (re)discover all the beauty that is in the skies…
“A journey of a thousand miles
starts under one’s feet.”
Laozi, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 64
I just returned from a short but very busy trip to Beijing. Spring had already arrived there and cherry trees, magnolia, and lilac were in full bloom. It was still cold at night but nice and warm during the day. Unfortunately, we just barely had the chance to either enjoy much of Beijing’s parks and life there or inhale the special atmosphere in its wonderful temples, but we had days full of sunshine and without smog. Of course air quality could have been better and traffic less, and I could have done with a little less noise too, but what can you expect of a megacity of more than 20 million people?!
However, what still always surprises me is the friendliness of the people and the respect and warm welcome they give us. In all of Beijing’s hustle and bustle, I’ve never felt lost or unsafe. We have met old friends and also made new ones, and I hope I will call them so many years to come. New doors opened and I believe exciting projects will follow upon this short visit. It is too early to tell more, but I will be back in Beijing later this year. And wherever I will be until then, a little bit of Beijing and its people will always be with me.
“The world is your kaleidoscope, and the varying combinations of colors which at every succeeding moment it presents to you are the exquisitely adjusted pictures of your ever-moving thoughts.”
James Allen, As A Man Thinketh, 1902
Saatchi Art, the online presence of the famous Saatchi Gallery of London, brings together collectors and artists. Collectors can search for original artworks they might like using different search criteria. In the photography section, this can be for example the style an artist chose, the subject of the photography, or the medium used for the print. Medium categories are for example digital, black and white, color, or Polaroid. To represent color photography on their website, Saatchi Art chose my photograph “Over Russia (2)” from the “Above the Clouds”-collection, a powerful picture of an evening sky turned into all kinds of red and purple by the setting sun which I shot from an airliner on a flight from Germany to China in 2014. Check that out on Saatchi Art!