This and That

Random bits of my life

Posts Tagged ‘Old City’

More from the Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

Posted by Avital Pinnick on July 11, 2017

“RGB3D” (Ido Scherf and Shai Shtarker, Israel) was a clever installation. At first glance it looked like a pretty but meaningless display of coloured lightbulbs behind a fence. In front of the fence were three steps, coloured red, blue, and green. When viewed from the top of each step, the lights spelled the name of the colour. I took this photo from the RED step.

|RGB3D, Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

“Moon Haze” (Feng Jiacheng and Huang Yuanbei, PR China), or the far side of the moon, literally. I walked around it to the other side to photograph the inflated moon at a reasonable distance, away from the crowds. I included the guy with the phonecam to show scale. The moon is sitting on the 3,000-year-old Broad Wall, one of the ancient city walls of Jerusalem.

Moon Haze, Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

I’ve seen some weird things in the Muristan but “Oasis” (Gil Teichman, in collaboration with Nitzan Refaeli and Ronen Nadjar, Israel) tops them all. The installation “includes a special performance of favorite elephants from previous festivals.” Previous festivals? Does that mean previous Jerusalem Festivals of Light? Did anyone see the elephants performing? I saw inflated elephants with a soundtrack of elephants trumpeting. If someone managed to get elephants into the cramped streets of the Christian Quarter, that would have been quite a logistcal feat.

"Oasis," Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

Batei Mahsei has had some stunning video-mapping installations projected onto its distinctive arched facade in the past. This was not one of them. “Dream Machine,” by Liron Gavish, Shootzi, Tal Heuberger, and Ido Ramon, Israel. It was pleasant but not stunning.

Dream Machine, Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

“Drawn in Light,” by Ralf Westerhof, The Netherlands, was simple but surprisingly effective. The three-dimensional wire house, trees, and other elements, suspended as a giant mobile, comprised a constantly changing landscape. The house’s rotation revealed new details and perspectives. It’s difficult to show scale in a photo. According to the description, the installation was 13 meters wide.

Drawn in Light, Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

“Cathedral of Mirrors” (Mads Christensen, Denmark) was an interactive installation with motion sensors. The colours shifted and pulsated when people walked between the columns or touched them.

Cathedral of Mirrors, Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

“Fly,” by Itzik Ilus, Israel. Clear plastic birds lit by coloured lights. This year the route was marked by orange arrow signs. They were much more difficult to locate and follow than the strings of LED lights usedat  past festivals. Please bring back the light strings! You have no idea how many people missed the sharp right turn down the stairs to Batei Mahsei, walking from the Cardo to the Hurva by accident.

"Fly," Jerusalem Festival of Light 2017

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Festival of Light 2016: Photos from the Red Route

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 15, 2016

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The photos above and below are of the installation at the Church of the Dormition. A woman in an elaborate costume sang opera (sounded like Puccini) in front of the church, which was lit by projections. A lot of people liked it but I honestly didn’t enjoy it. The alley behind the church is extremely narrow and it became a bottleneck with crowds of people standing and shooting videos and phone pics. The scale was bizarre–you could either view the woman on a small raised platform or the church, but not both, because of the small viewing area.

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Reflection of Co-existence,” by Cochavi & Klein, Israel.

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Northern Lights,” by Aleksandra Stratimirovic, Sweden.

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Festival of Light 2016: Live Music

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 2, 2016

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The Festival of Light almost always has a few live musical acts, which are often not noted on the maps or list of exhibits, so running into them is a matter of serendipity. The fellow above was playing an inverted steel drum, which I believe is a Hang (took me a few tries to track that one down!). If you want to know what it sounds like, scroll down to the video I’ve embedded at the end of this post. This musician wasn’t listed among the artists, so I have no idea what his name is. He appeared in the middle of the blue route.

Guitarist at the beginning of the blue route:

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Pyromania’s “Illuminated Orchestra,” going for a stroll along the Armenian Quarter road.

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Digeridoo player at the beginning of the red trail. I took this photo very quickly, so I didn’t notice the ultra-orthodox family watching the musician.

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Here’s a video with four short clips of the Hang drummer, “Crystalized” (blue trail), “Globoscope” (green trail), and an un-named installation on the red trail, with Eimear Quinn singing “The Voice”.

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Festival of Light 2016: Fountain

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 1, 2016

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If you haven’t been to this year’s Festival of Light in the Old City (and Nahalat Shiva), you still have tonight and tomorrow. The fountain outside Jaffa Gate was wonderful. It’s worth watching the performance all the way through an entire cycle–only about 7 minutes.

The installation is called, “A Moment with Water Fountains,” by Latvian artists Diana Civle, Janis Petersons, and Marcis Gulbis. If you’re viewing the fountain from the “front”, where all the people are, you will have to find a good angle where you aren’t blocked by trees, people’s heads, and the ubiquitous cellphones. But you can hear the music more easily from the side of the fountain that is closest to Jaffa Gate.

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If you don’t mind being further from the sound, the ramparts of the Tower of David (ground level, just outside the wall) are never crowded and there’s only one tree blocking the view.

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During the finale, the water forms a grey wall and pictures are projected onto the water. The projections are more vivid from the “back” of the fountain than the front:

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Here’s a video I took of the fountain. The first half is from the front and the second half from the back (on the following night). Sorry about the wind noise in the second segment–I was planning only to take still photos, so I didn’t bring a directional mike and I don’t have a “dead cat.”

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Ceilings in the Muslim Quarter

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 29, 2015

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Silver worms escape through a hole in the ceiling, on their way to devour the world….

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Walls in the Muslim Quarter

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 29, 2015

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Food in the Muslim Quarter

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 22, 2015

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Close-up of sweets piled in a cylinder shape.

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Jaffar’s Sweets shop again:

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Hand-painted sign at a butcher’s shop. I should have asked the price of pigeons per kilo.

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Clothing in the Muslim Quarter

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 22, 2015

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These dresses for little girls aren’t costumes. They’re for celebrations.

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Colourful padded bras are very popular.

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People in the Muslim Quarter

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 22, 2015

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Beggar at the Damascus Gate. It was a Friday, so a lot of people were going through the gate to the Dome of the Rock. I was able to take this photo when there was a gap in the crowd.

I haven’t taken photos in the Muslim Quarter of the Old City for years. I went recently with a group as part of a Photo Meetup. It was very interesting to see the non-touristy parts of the shuk, where people buy housewares, clothing, and food instead of souvenirs and soft drinks. We did experience some low-level harassment (a man tried to squash me between a pushcart and a market stall but I was able to squirm out of the way; another woman, taking a picture from a kneeling position, got a whack in the face when someone walked deliberately into her camera lens). But most people were OK and one woman seemed delighted when a member of our group asked to photograph her daughter.

Sunglasses display outside a shop in the Damascus Gate:

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Boy buying sweets at the Jaffur Sweets shop:

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This young woman has such a beautiful, serene face.

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Vegetable vendor in front of pink and white wall:

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Not a very good picture because the little girl was almost hidden behind the pink blouse on the left. Marcel asked the girl’s mother (smiling, in the middle) if he could photograph this pretty girl in a backpack and embroidered dress.

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More Rainy Day Photos in the Old City

Posted by Avital Pinnick on May 26, 2014

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I wish I could have photographed this man a second before, when he was positioned in front of the electricity box. Unfortunately, someone was in my way (definite disadvantage when you go on a photo walk–everyone wants the same shot). I thought the shot would look better with a sepia tone and hoped it would minimize the white box behind the subject with the graffiti.

Typical souvenir shop in the shuk. I wanted to create an Aladdin’s cave of treasures atmosphere, so I underexposed this image slightly.

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Hat display. Again, a lot of competition for the same shot, so you may see this elsewhere.

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Man in passageway. I rendered this image in black and white to increase the contrast between the dark arches and the light. Since it was a rainy day, there wasn’t a whole lot of light to work with.

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This photo of an alley in the shuk was taken at a low angle. It’s a good idea to wear old clothes if you’re shooting in a muddy environment because sometimes you do have to get down on the ground to get a certain perspective. I liked the contrast of the woman’s orange coat and the gray paving stones, as well as the lines of the ramp stones leading to the subject.

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Tower of David photographed from the roof of the Petra Hotel.

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