Posts Tagged ‘Monocle


Villa Torlonia

P1230389How nice to read Monocle and discover a whole article about Quartiere Trieste in Rome! Villa Torlonia, the via Alessandria market, Villa Paganini, Piazza Capranica. And yesterday Edoardo Albinati’s “La scuola cattolica” won the Strega book prize, which again, reminds us of Quartiere Trieste/Quartiere Bologna being the story set in S.Leone Magno.

Yes I am a bit nostalgic of our Kiez in Rome, I am.


Go east

Just in time for the 19.53 ICE to Berlin Hauptbahnhof…BerlinDusseldorfExpress.


I love paper

A link suggested by Markus Albers in Berlin.

Pure tactile and visual beauty.



art fatigue

Daring geometries, dazzling surfaces: the MAXXI is beautiful. Its inauguration, with Sasha Waltz’s dialoge 09 choreography was gorgeous. The Festival del Cinema inauguration party was great.

But as a museum, it is neither user-friendly, nor friendly. I had inspected the livre d’or the first time I went to an opening, and the comments were all concerning the hefty entry tickets (students) and the total absence of benches and resting areas (all the other comments). “Lousy bookshop!” was my personal entry onto the white page. I am a bit disappointed, I love Hadid’s architecture. Having said that…who knows if this is the “real McCoy” project or if she had to twist and bend it – like Piano had to do for the Auditorium. Bend it like Piano…

So it was not surprising to spot these two visitors squatting on the only 2 benches available in the museum. Art fatigue indeed.

Monocolumn deals with another type of art fatigue – the recalibrating of Berlin’s contemporary art galleries. Because Berlin – like Rome – is only for the brave.


Of trains and magazines

I love to indulge in 19th century modern pleasures, such as reading magazines on a train. This is why I read with great pleasure – from my window seat in my living room – Tyler Brûlé’s most recent Fast Lane column on the FT last weekend.

To be honest, one needs to be discerning in picking trains and press. The German combo highlighted in the article is one of the most satisfying. I can’t resist the temptation of stocking up on Brand Eins, Dummy, Der Spiegel, WiWo when I am in a Bahnhof, be it Munich, Berlin or Frankfurt, thus making my tote bag with Monocle, The Economist and Wired definitely bursting at the seams. And no matter what my German friends say, I still find ICE trains quite above EU average!

Eurostar crossing the channel for me is synonimus with Tatler, Vogue UK and L’Officiel. But this is more like browsing magazines, not really an immersive experience. These magazines remind me more about work, so they are not so relaxing as they used to be 10 years ago, when I was sipping advertising, not tasting it while thinking about the competition’s advertising strategies. And to be honest they just look all the same.

Getting through Brand Eins needs definitely more focus since for me German is not a language I can browse through. I have to embrace the text, dive into it, abstract from everything else. And mark with my purple PILOT pen a few newly minted German words which I will then add to my vocabulary.

Trains and good press. What a fabulous way to connect and disconnect at the same time. To reach a destination without jumping towards it. Reading, not browsing. And conversating with a total stranger on a train retains such a magic that no blog, forum, facebook will ever be able to convey.

The train, sublime social networking platform, leaving in 4 minutes from platform 3!

Photo: http://www.seat61 .com


Techno Luxury: part 3 – in the lap of tech

Another interesting article by Markus Albers for Monocolumn on Berlin’s power of attraction on things techno is the right trigger for the final wrap-up report on the recent Techno Luxury Conference held in Berlin in November by Herald Tribune & The New York Times.

There’s a lot of talk about tablets and new interfaces, different on one side from the PC/Mac and from the mobile/smart phone on the other one. And during the conference the guys from the NYT Lab were in Berlin to show how the intermediate format can offer a different set of content, both in terms of text and images/video. Basically, another type of user experience. Today even Repubblica has an extensive article on the topic. Strange…in a country not used to buy books by the dozen, I would be surprised to see a success of e-books on a tablet. But gadgets are different animals from books.

Mayor Wowereit was a speaker at the conference (“Berlin Powerhouse”) and one sentence, in a nutshell, delivered his articulated message : “Berlin offers opportunities, but you really need to be prepared, be motivated, be disciplined in order to succeed“. Forums are full of people wanting to move to Berlin, but not all of them are planning it carefully, as if they would do when moving to Zurich or Stockholm. In the same forums in fact one can find dozens of posts on the thread “Berlin – graveyard of ambitions”. A cheap rent can be useful when starting up a new life or a new business, but hey, you need to turn a living and a profit nonetheless. You need a business plan. Continue reading ‘Techno Luxury: part 3 – in the lap of tech’


…talking about things techno…eMAG!

lupus in fabula! We’re just in the middle of our klein reportage on Techno Luxury from Berlin and yesterday Monocle’s Monocolumn covered the new evolutions on the media scene.

Guess where do the news come from? Berlin!   Markus Albers reports…

November 22, 2009 — Berlin
Writer: Markus Albers

I’ve spent the past few days tucked away in a secret hideaway in the headquarters of the German publishing house Axel Springer, helping create what the company thinks could be the salvation of newspapers. I’m not allowed to tell you everything that’s been debated but I can tell about the outcome of all that work: today the company launches eMag – an electronic magazine that will be part of the Berlin-based national quality Sunday paper Welt am Sonntag.

Continue reading ‘…talking about things techno…eMAG!’

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