As if the old baseball banner of a team
Lenin is still left in Central Asia
Quiet entrance of a factory space
As if the time has stopped passing--the reflection on the glasses might be the current, or the past
The frame of the chair is put up one by one by hands
lady who has been supporting the family the society, works by hands in the most efficient form
The delicate combination of the wooden roof and the cast iron roof truss
The truck designed in Soviet era has a very cute face like a human
The wood dry bins have been used intensively, with the history accumulated on the doors and the walls
My stay in Beirut was accidentaly overlapped with the struggle in Tripoli and the bomb explosion (terror attack?) in Beirut central area.
The struggle with Hezbollah has been continuing for some time now, and the police/military has been place on alart in Beirut also. The bomb explosion put on an increased level of alert especially at night, that you see the barricated on the streets here and there with the police/military personels querying the drivers and pedestrians. It appeared that people were tying to stay inside of the houses.
The turquoise blue mosque stands and contrasts with the blue sky of Beirut. However, once look around you see the red beret police personel or the soldiers on the anti-aircraft tanks
As you move around the city, you find the remains of the scars, left from the past struggles. However, you also see almost the equal numbers of Christian churches and Isramic mosques as the sign of co-existence and cooperation in the long history of Lebanon
I managed to get out from Beirut.
I further traveled to the West and reached to istanbul.
The rulers of this city has been changed so often, and everytime the power collided, merged and often co-existed. That can be felt in the air of this city--as you pass through the small passage coming down from the European atmosphere of the street side to the gulf shore, you may find the anacatesthesia in a drifting time, loosing the sense of time separating the past and current moment. The bold day light casting at the corner of the passage, and the squeak of the rail by the city tramcar suddenly bring you back to the reality of this moment, of this city.
What you would see beyond this daily scenery of the town--it is the moment you realize with such notion, when the reality of your mind is separated from the surrounding
The strong daylight flashes on your mind to impress the scenery of the passage, as if the scenery remains on your mind as a slow motion flash back
With the morning light, the daily lives of people and the ordinally day just begins again for everyone. And the sunset and the resounding of Koran will bring the end of the day, or probablly it would even make us feel that is the quiet and calm end of everything. And this appears like the eternal repetition of the beginning and the end without changing its path from the past to the future.
The city scape of Istanbul illuminated by the morning sun. Seemingly European, but it is yet very Istanbul, color of the air
The people who head for the work begin to move the air of the morning
The busy and vivid full dressing of the low income area
No shade on the faces of children
The city was developed in Soviet era with clear urban planning, with wide streets and beautiful street side trees. It does not have much bold statement, but once we stepped away from the center of the city with beaurocratic buildings, there is a quiet town with small but nice houses.
I found an abandoned house, and I stopped walking for a while.
The Red Star is now lost its color paint. Soviet has left, and the residents might have left, too.
The next house is also abandoned, but it seems there were people until recent.
It feels nostalgic--it is a previlege of a light-minded traveler.
Those bricks had to be stack up one by one. Such trace of hands will always remain afterwards.
A past is revealed behind the plastered, covered wall.
When people leave, what's left is an offhand object.
It seems that someone is living here. A sense of humor is visible in that hand-made feeling.
The notion of "nostalgy" is also derived from the crafty built of those houses. It is clearly different from what is "mass produced" today.
Those small windows reveal the sensibility of the people here.
It made me smile, somehow--I felt a sense of humor, and sensitivity at the same time.
I found a beautiful house.
In English word, "cozy" is used in case of "comfortable, relaxed, warm, kind, friendly, easy, at-home, etc." This word can be used when a house or a space is based on the lifestyle of the people who live in, and when a good relationship is built betweent the resident and the space. Is this word applicable for the today's Japanese architecture and houses,,,?
A house is not a product, but a sinage to tell the lives of people, and a space to hold such lives within it.
Kyrgyzstan is located South of Kazakhstan and facing to China on its South-East side. It was once the important point of Silk Road, which went separately to Tadzhikistan for the South road and this Kyrgyzstan for the North road, to go around Tian Shan mountain ranges and Pamir Plateau.
One of the project sites that I visited this time, the town of Naryn, is located at the middle of Kyrgyzstan, with the population of 30,000 people. The town spreads along with Naryn River, but its access is only through the chain of mountains from the capital city of Bishkek, which goes as high as 7000m. This is the country of tall mountains and high altitude plataue.
As soon as we frew over by a helicopter, we were just overwhelmed by the towering, chain of mountains. The mountains with snow on the peak, and the rouch curved mountain surface which has been transformed slowly but steadily, made me think that the Earth is still an unreachable, bold existence to our human beings. It took my breath away--and I kept looking outside of the window of that small helicopter.
Various forms of the surface of the earth. The beauty of coincidents, without any reward.
At the project site, we face to the huge red rocky mountain. Naryn river flows constantly with the clear water from the tall mountain glacier in blue-green color.
Behind the red mountain is the sandy mountain instead with wide open plateau on its skirt.
One thing that struck me was that there are many trees in the town. If there are people living, there are always trees planted around the living environment. Especially aspen trees are seen all the way along with street, reaching even outside of the town. The trees were breathtakingly beautifu with colored leaves against the sandy mountain surface--it is telling that the harsh winter is near.
Cows and horses are wandering around the town streets.
People told me that it was a lost decade in 1990s after the Soviet Union has left the area. However, the biggest population of the town seems to be those young people as it might symbolize the growing and developing country--and their faces and voices are bright in hope for the future. Even though they realize the transformation of the society and the way of living, they naturally find and accept the way of life, which has been constantly kept within the relationship with the majestic nature. The simple and natural existence of people, cows, sheeps, horses--yet they strongly tell the meaning of our existence.
Many of the people in town seems to be the descendants of Mongolian people. They welcomed us as they might feel accessible from our look.
There are some stones on the ground with curved surface telling the lives of ancient people. The lives that can be imagined seem to be similar to what I was looking at.
And yet we visitors tend to feel the smallness of our existence, as we are accustomed to the economical wealth, living in the artificial concrete mountain of the city. It might be our karma.
The next edition will be the visit to Tadzhikistan.
As I opened the door of a bookshelf, the door shook the light and shadow as if it turns them inside out. It took my breath away and stopped my hand of opening the door--then a ray of twilight refracted by the door was projected on the ceiling.
It was a tense moment, inserted within the hanging shade.
The light gradually dicipates into the shade by repeating a reflection and a refraction. But the afternoon light allows to feel the calm waves of diffraction.
Light and shadow--is not black and white. The dramatic contraposition of darkness and lightness is renditioned by the abyss of gradation that exists between the two. Junichiro Tanizaki's "In praise of light and shadow" might have tried to represent the merging point of western culture and eastern culture in such expression.
The sun rises and sets. Those objects gradually lap the shade in twilight, while waiting for the moment to be illuminated and reflect luminescence to the quiet space.
That is a space filled with tensity. The intense atmosphere reveals that a space is not just a simple relationship between void and mass.
However, the tense air shimmers with a transient light. It reminds me of a quantal field of endless appearance and disappearnce, and the shimmering primal ocean before the birth of this universe.
Click to enlarge. One day I was watching a movie in my room and accidentaly I placed my glass in front of the projector. That moment the image disappeared and refracted into the space in bars and blocks of light. Those lights were casted on the wall, expressing the transforming light and colors. Breathtaking moment...
Click to enlarge. You may access to the video version of this photo from the link bellow. Vidoe version shows more of the transition of beautiful light and colors.