August 29, 2014

bornholm, denmark: wonderfestiwall + förtress

There comes a moment in everyone's life when you're asked to attend a music festival on an island off the coast of Denmark (Bornholm) as a guest of a rock-n-roll band you befriended. Well that probably doesn't happen very often, but when it does, you should say yes! I did. And that's why you are now seeing the Danish band, Förtress, dominate my blog. This video will give you a tiny taste: HOWL. Watch it. Love it. Repeat. The pictures above tell our journey to Wonderfestiwall from start to finish, loading at the practice space, traveling to the island, sound checking, story telling, performing and relaxing as band members, roadies and tagalongs (I fall into this last category, but I did help!).
But as a tagalong and foreign observer, I can confidently say that this band is badass. And not just because they're a rock-n-roll band, but because they're an EPIC rock-n-roll band that melts your face while making you dance and jump and thoroughly enjoy your life and the decisions you made that led you to this experience. They're intense. But they laugh at their intensity with sincerity and satirically mock the absurdity of pure Rock and pure Roll. And take you along for a very fun ride.
And confession, I have a teensy crush on the lead singer, Nicklas. Talented singer, epic guitar shredder, provocative dancer, devilishly handsome and all around captivating performer. Not to mention well read, traveled and versed in art, music and culture... What's not to like :) But truly, everyone on this trip made it memorable. Cato on drums, performs in American flag undies and hypes the crowd with pure muscle. Simon on guitar, hilarious, happy and will lure you in with epic (can I keep saying epic?) guitar solos. John on bass, the ladies love him. Bjørn, roadie and close friend, has curls that rival my own and is one energetic little cliff climber. Nynne, my fellow tagalong and she has a smile that makes your heart happy. And you may have noticed several photos of a bearded man. His name is Emil and he is a handsome phenomenon. Everyone, and I mean everyone, can't help themselves from staring at him and his kind eyes, strong eye brows, adorable dimples, welcoming smile, quiet demeanor, sharp wit... I could keep going, but I think you get the idea. My camera loves him and so will you.
We ended the night with a trek to a dilapidated fortress (very appropriate, no?) to watch the sunset and see the beautiful, age old battle between crashing waves and sturdy mountains.
Once again, Denmark has stolen my heart.

August 26, 2014

madrid, spain: art + architecture

Things I did in Madrid:
Walked the entire city and enjoyed the phenomenal, archaic and beautiful architecture
Ate tapas and drank sangria at El Mercado de San Miguel
Visited El Museo Nacional del Prado and observed 15-19th century art
Took a nap in Parque del Retiro
Rocked in a chair in el Palacio de Cristal
And I suggest that you do all of these things :)

August 24, 2014

figueres, spain: salvador dali museum

My older brother, Thomas, first introduced me to Salvador Dali when I was 12. He had a book of Dali's work in his room and I would sit and stare at the surrealism in front of me. Beautiful, creepy, multi-dimensional, grotesque, completely enthralling and addicting. His work has always stayed with me. In college, instead of the usual dorm room adornments, I had Hallucinogenic Torreador, Swans Reflecting Elephants, Meditative Rose and Galatea of the Spheres framed and hanging on my walls. I once had a very peculiar evening with one of his paintings that only my closest friends are privy to... And I intend to keep it that way (insert mischievous smile here).
I jumped at the opportunity to visit his home town in Figueres, Spain, where he built the world's most intense surrealist museum. Seeing his work first hand reminded of those moments in my brother's room when I was young. As if I was seeing it all for the first time again. The more I lost myself in his work, the more I would discover. Doors within doors within doors and levels within levels within levels. At times, I'd have it figured it out, or so I thought, until I saw something completely new when looking through my camera lens.
It's an incredible moment of discovery when you realize there is so much more to discover. Endless. In a way, this entire trip seems that way. As if there are endless doors and adventures to discover. And the beautiful part is, there are.
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