Cuenca

Cuenca: a journey in Spain, searching for great emotions

Cuenca is a tiny village in the Castilla-La Mancha Region, a site almost famous for “El ingenioso hidalgo don Quijote de la Mancha”, the book narrating the adventures of a horseman tilting at windmills, that are copious in this area.

The old village, declaired Unesco World Heritage, is castled on a steep mountain; at the top, you will be lost in amezement, looking at the unique Casas Colgadas, “suspended houses” built in the XIV century which are clinging to the rock and supported by wooden beams.

The village is almost colored and full of history: because of the presence of the Bishop, there are many important buildings and monuments to look to: the Bishop Palace, the Cathedral of St. Maria and St. Julian, the Alcazar (the castle) and the ancient tower, symbols of the arabic presence in the town.

 

Gear:  Canon Eos 1000D, Canon EF-S 18-55 and  Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

London in 3 days – #day2

The second day of London trip. In this gallery some typical places and classic London’s icons.

 

GearCanon EOS 6DCanon EF 50mm F/1.2L USM, Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM and  Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8 L USM II

 

Gae Aulenti square and surroundings – Part #1

The modern and beautiful Gae Aulenti square, opened in December 2012, is located in front of Garibaldi station and next to Corso Como, famous place of Milan’s nightlife.

The square was designed by the Argentine architect Cesar Pelli for the AECOM, and is dedicated to the italian architect and designer Gae Aulenti, architect of the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.

Nearby the Gae Aulenti square there are other beautiful modern buildings.

The Unicredit Tower, the ultramodern skyscraper occupied by the Italian bank Unicredit, wich dominates the square.

The towers named “Bosco Verticale” designed by italian architect Stefano Boeri, with a height of 110 meters and 76 meters, that will host more than 900 trees.

You can see also, in this photo gallery, the palace of the Lombardy Regional Council, the Diamond Tower, the Pirelli Tower and all the new buildings of the modern city of Milan.
All shots of this gallery have been converted in black and white with a simulation of Kodak TRI-X 400 35mm film grain.

Gear:  Canon EOS 6D,  Canon EF 16-35mm F/4L IS USM and Canon EF 70-200mm F/2,8L IS II USM

Freetown Christiania – Copenaghen

Christiania is a unique place to visit in the borough of Christianshavn in Copenaghen (Denmark),  known for its autonomous inhabitants’ different way of life.

It was established in 1971 by a group of hippies who occupied some abandoned military barracks and developed their own set of society rules, completely independent of the Danish government.

They claimed the area as a free city, free of taxes and run by their own laws. It is still a society within a society, for an example you cannot buy a house in Christiania.

Around 1000 people permanently living in Christiania, and its constructions exemplifying modern “architecture without architects”.

Visitors are welcome in Christiania and to eat and drink in the area’s cafés, restaurants and bars, but it’ no safety take photographs in Christiania, especially in the area around Pusher Street, so, this is the reason because there are not people in this photo gallery.

In Pusher Street hash and skunk weed were sold openly from permanent stands until 2004. The hash commerce is controversial, but legalization of cannabis is one of the ideas of many of the citizens in Christiania.

 

GearCanon EOS 6D and Canon EF 16-35mm F/4L IS USM

Rotterdam (Netherlands)

Rotterdam is a very interesting city to visit in Netherlands for several reasons: architecture, history, museums, culture.

Rotterdam has the largest cargo port in Europe, is the city of the famous  Erasmus of Rotterdam, and was voted 2015 European City of the Year by the Academy of Urbanism.

At difference of the others cities in Netherlands nowadays preserving the old typical houses and architecture, the heart of Rotterdam was almost completely destroyed by the German Luftwaffe during World War II (the Rotterdam Blitz), so, the city was gradually rebuilt between the 1950s to the 1970s developing an active architectural policy. Daring and new styles of apartments, office buildings and recreation facilities resulted in a more ‘livable’ city centre with a new and modern skyline. 

Another photo gallery is about one of the most fascinating example of Rotterdam’s modern architecture is the Kubuswoningen: Cube Houses.

Wandering into the city is very interesting to admire the skyline of Rotterdam, but also interesting are the open-air Maritime Museum along the banks, and the old harbour, nice piece of history of Rotterdam.

Other remarkable attractions in Rotterdam are the Erasmusbrug (also called ‘The Swan”) and, of course, the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. This is one of the best art museums I’ve visited, and not because it has one of the mine favourites paint, the “Little” Tower of Babel, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, but it has a comprehensive collection of Flemish art and also classical and modern art: Hieronymus Bosch, Rembrandt, Monet, Kandinsky, van Gogh, Cattelan, Cézanne, Magritte, Dalí, Edvard Munch.

 

Gear: Canon Eos 6D, Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM and Canon EF 50mm f/1.2 L USM.

Corfu old town – Kerkyra

A photogallery of shots taken wandering in Corfu old town (Kerkyra) on the Island of Corfu.

The city has become known as a Kastropolis (Castle City) because of its two castles: New castle and Old Fortress. Old city is also UNESCO World Heritage since 2007.

The layout of the old town resembles that of  Venice, with tall buildings and a maze of narrow streets and small piazzas around churches.

Wandering in this labyrinth of narrow streets paved with cobblestones, sometimes tortuous but mostly pleasant, colourful and sparkling clean, may be found some houses of the Venetian time, and British Neoclassical housing of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

These small streets are called “kantounia” and the older ones sometimes follow the gentle irregularities of the ground while many of them are too narrow for vehicular traffic.

Interesting the architecture of historic Liston street in old town that has been copied from the Rivoli Street in Paris.

 

Gear: Canon Eos 6D,  Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM and Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM

Paleokastritsa Monastery

On a hill above the beach of Paleokastritsa in Corfù there is a Monastery, excellent example of Greek monastic architecture.

Inside has a small ecclesiastical museum with rare Byzantine icons, holy books and other relics. Very interesting to see, also the chapel and beautiful courtyards.

 

Gear: Canon Eos 6D,  Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM

Old and modern architecture in Copenaghen (Part #1)

Copenaghen is known for good contemporary design,  furniture, lights and… the absolutely stunning city architecture. Besides the major historic architecture, Copenhagen is filled with contemporary buildings of the highest quality.

Water, space, sustainability and light are the key elements in the recent architectural boom in maritime Copenhagen. Remarkably, you rarely find the new clashing with the old. More often than not, the contemporary architecture in Copenhagen actually heightens the experience of the historic buildings and streets.

So, in this first part of photo gallery dedicated to Copenaghen’s buildings, I blend together old buildings photos and modern building photos, as well as you can see walking in this beautiful city.

In this gallery:

  • Rosemborg Castle, a royal hermitage set in the King’s Garden in the heart of Copenhagen, built by the most famous Scandinavian king, Christian IV.
  • Marble Church, with the characteristic copper green dome is one of the most impressive churches of the city.
  • St. Paul’s Church, also colloquially known as Nyboder’s Church.
  • Copenaghen city hall.
  • Sølvgade Skole (Elementary school), contrary to appearances, is Denmark’s oldest school (built in 1847). Architect C.F. Møller has renovated the school and done an colorful modernistic  extension.
  • Some industrial buildings (warehouses, factories) converted for civil use, as school or houses.
  • Some modern houses on the water. One of these, with internal pier for small boats.
  • An angle of the Stroget (the longes pedestrian street in Europe)

 

Gear: Canon Eos 6D, Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM and Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM II

Cube houses in Rotterdam

One of the most fascinating example of Rotterdam’s modern architecture is the Kubuswoningen (Cube Houses).

The city of Rotterdam asked at Dutch architect Piet Blom to design housing in the most historic section of Rotterdam’s port, so he decided to use the cubic houses idea, applying his earlier cube housing project in Helmond in 1970.

The concept behind these houses is that he tries to create a forest by each cube representing an abstract tree; therefore the whole village becomes a forest.

These cool houses are 100 square metres over 3 floors, and it was a bit extraordinary to see these houses fixed on one angle, and see a very different approach to living.

The cubic housing development endured various challenges and complications during design and construction. The cubes are tilted and sit on hexagon-shaped pole structures and contain the living areas, which are split into three levels.

The triangle-shaped lower level contains the living area.

The middle level contains the sleeping area and a bathroom, while the top level, also in a triangular shape, is used as either an extra bedroom or a living space.

The top level provides a great view since the apex of the room is a three sided pyramid with windows all around.

 

Gear: Canon Eos 6D and Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM