Maybe you’ve noticed too, but in the last year or so, it seems there was a noticeable shift in the way people use Facebook. Suddenly my more exhibitionist friends stopped posting updates of every move they made, and the ones who had always been more social networking reticent started posting more regularly. The sudden lack of status updates like “Just fed the cat, sitting down with the newspaper.” was at first an incredible relief, and then incredibly illuminating. No one was typing that anymore because no one was doing it anymore, and that was partly because Facebook itself had turned into a news and human interest Reader’s Digest of sorts, compiled and edited by our online friends. Why kill a tree when all the stories you need to stay up to speed with your friend-circle are right there on your screen?
So, yesterday, when one of my Facebook friends made a contribution to the Daily Digest of a photo of John Waters with the quote caption, “We need to make books cool again. If you go home with somebody and they dont’ have books, don’t **** them”, I had to smile. If you’re in agreement about the fast-disappearing tactile experience of holding a book, if you love smelling the ink, feeling the quality of the paper on the edge of your thumb, or the irreplaceable suspense of turning a page to discover who-knows-what, oh, AND YOU’RE IN NEW YORK CITY THIS WEEKEND, head straight to the NY Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1 between today and Sunday October 2nd.
Apart from 200 exhibitors of contemporary art catalogs, monographs and art periodicals, this year introduces an outdoor tent of 60 zinesters to the mix of international presses, booksellers, antiquarian dealers, artists and independent publishers that make up the NY Art Book Fair. This year also includes special projects, screenings, book signings, and performances, details of all of which can be found on their website. One not to miss is e-Flux’s presentation of Liam Gillick and W.A.G.E. launching the new e-Flux reader Are You Working Too Much? Post-Fordism, Precarity, and the Labor of Art with special readings October 1st and 12noon.
Just as irreplaceable as the feeling of physically holding a beautifully made book, make White Line Hotels edit The Greenwich Hotel your place in NYC.
all photos http://nyartbookfair.com/
Alexander Ehrmann, the man behind White Line Hotels Collaborator Saint Charles Apothecary, approaches health as a circle of wellbeing. We caught up with him recently to ask more about his approach to tradition in the modern world — and no, not even at the pharmacy must the 2 exist separately. At least at Saint Charles.
I understand that you’re a 6th generation pharmacist. At what moment did you realize you wanted to follow into the “family business”?
Never. I just got ‘drawn’ into it. At a certain moment I realized that I like to work with people on an ‘eye to eye’ basis. Maybe this is a reason why we run a restaurant too.
Do you feel that this long tradition in your own family is responsible for your pharmaceutical philosophy?
Definitely. From very early stages I had my own ideas how to get in ‘touch’ with my clients. As a pharmacists you get as close to the people as hardly anybody. This is a great chance and we feel that we have something like a ‘contract’ with our clients.
What does “tradition” mean to you?
A lot. I find it extremely thrilling to deal with the term tradition without any ‘blinkers’. I don’t wear lederhosn, I don’t know how to yodel. Paracelsus is the ancestor of our work. To bring his ideas, his work, his products into the 21st century is a wonderful assignment.
I read someone describe what you do at Saint Charles as “LOHAS” (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability). What do you think about that?
Maybe 4-5 years ago somebody told us ’what you do is so lohas’. What? I had never heard about lohas before. People feel that traditional medicine is something they can trust, they get in touch with their own roots. Very often we get the weirdest feedbacks. You touch people with traditional medicine completely different than with ‘conventional’ methods. Never play hardball with amateurs. That’s what my professor at the Istituto di Chimica Farmaceutica in Perugia had written on his desk. What this means for me? You have to be professionally trained, the whole staff has to be at a level of knowledge that rocks. Nothing, absolutely nothing is superficial.
There’s a saying that “prevention is the best medicine”. How true do you think that is?
Very true. How you live, what you eat, what kind of medicine you take. It’s all one circle.
You have several own-brand products at Saint Charles. Can you tell me a little bit about the ranges and how they were developed?
When I was a little boy I had to work in my parents cellar. It was dark. It was illegal. They would’nt care. Work had to be done. That was the beginning of the SAINT CHARLES product range. Meanwhile we have the ranges ‘from outside’, ‘from inside’ and ‘from between’. Beauty products (cream, oil, soap, tonics……) are from outside. Capsules, tonicas etc are from inside and products like our own wine, vinegar, olive oil etc are from between.
How important do you think food is in a comprehensive approach to health and wellbeing? And on that note, can you tell me something about the Alimentary, the “Pharmacy Restaurant”?
The circle of wellbeing, as mentioned above. That’s all what matters.
We have a wonderful farmhouse, one hour south of Vienna. The herbs we find there can be used in our homemade medicines, you can use them in cosmetic products and you can eat them. It’s a bingo! And it’s the main reason why we operate, besides the pharmacy, our cosmothecary plus the hideaway ( 100% organic brands only!)and our little Wirtshaus (meaning ‘like at home’).
We either plant the vegetables and fruits ourselves and if not, we know the producers of the staple food on a personal basis. Call them friends. No supermarket! Without any exceptions!
What can we look forward to in the future for Saint Charles?
End of September: opening of the bakery ‘Joseph’ in the first district. Absolutely wonderful bread and cookies. All organic. With lot’s of SAINT CHARLES ingredients.
Another SAINT CHARLES pharmacy due to be opened in Berlin, Prenzlauerberg.
Within the next 2-3 months: opening of a SAINT CHARLES Hofladen. In cooperation with the Biohof Adamah. Opposite the pharmacy, in the Gumpendorfertstrasse, close to the Naschmarkt
You’ll find the marriage of traditional and modern thinking in perfect balance at Hollmann Beletage, White Line Hotels pick in Vienna.
There’s one thing that you don’t always hear about the Greek island of Mykonos: they love their churches! So much so, in fact, that around the end of World War II people liked to say that there was a church for every day of the year, but even that wasn’t enough; the estimated number of churches on Mykonos is now close to 800, or enough for one per local family.
Of all these churches, the most famous is Panagia Paraportiani, and probably because it embodies the vision everyone holds in their heart of Cycladic architecture, but also the variations upon it that are unique to Mykonos. Typical cycladian architecture is a story of necessity. A scarcity in building materials, paired with strong winds, helped to create the cubic shapes and flat roofs so characteristic of the region. The whitewashing? A means to reflect the sun and keep interiors cool. How things got asymmetrical and more rounded on the island of Mykonos, however, is anyone’s guess. Maybe the island just always liked to do thing a little differently.
Panagia Paraportiani actually isn’t just a church; it’s 5-churches-in-1, built together during the period from 1425 until the 17th century. Built over 2 levels, the asymmetry of this conglomerate is especially highlighted from some angles by its ocean backdrop. Like with all things architectural, you just can’t fully experience it in photos. Why not go see Panagia Paraportiani for yourself? It’s just a 5 minute walk from White Line Hotels edit Mykonos Theoxenia Hotel.
Nurturing talent is clearly where it’s at. Not sure about you, but recently I’ve been coming across an increasing number of platforms and showcases that are solely and entirely dedicated to the young, their talent and the development and support thereof. This phenomenon appears to be spreading at a particularly fast rate within the creative sector, from fashion to furniture, from interiors to graphics – so if you’re young, creative and good, the conditions are excellent and your chances of getting exactly the right support in order to emerge successfully as a contender on the international design scene, couldn’t really be better. Cue design spotlight on Vienna from the 14th to the 16th October – where young creativity is pooled big-time within the superbly appointed blickfang international design fair.
The blickfang concept was launched a few years ago and has since established itself quite firmly as one of the most important international design events. It stands out from other design trade fairs as it welcomes not only trade visitors but also the general public; visitors are invited to explore new design resources, be inspired and also purchase directly from this new generation of carefully selected designers. So far blickfang venues have included Stuttgart, Basel, Vienna and Zurich – from 2012 the map broadens with the addition of new venues in Hamburg and Kopenhagen. Visit www.blickfang.com for updates and the latest on forthcoming dates and venues.
Next month’s blickfang sees the start of a curatorship by Stefan Diez, Munich-based interior designer, and his wife Saskia Diez, award-winning jewellery designer. As Curators of the Year, the renowned couple will lend their guidance and support to all four blickfang events over a period of one year, offering advice and answering questions on creativity and design at each event in Stuttgart, Basel, Vienna and Zurich.
Underlining the “nurture and promote” concept, the Vienna event will feature regular blickfang highlights such as:
blickfang design award – where a winning product is nominated and subsequently featured for several months at the prestigious MAK (Austrian Museum of Contemporary and Applied Arts) Design Shop
blickfang selected – five specially selected young designers are given the opportunity to exhibit free of charge and present their products to the general public and trade visitors
blickfang promotes – young design graduates, industry novices and innovators who would not usually have the possibility to exhibit at such an event, are given the opportunity to present their products and concepts through the support of the Austrian Federal Ministry for Education, Arts and Culture.
See you in Vienna!
Another spot in Vienna where creativity is pooled big-time? White Line Hotels edit The Hollmann Beletage, of course!
Contributing writer: Stefanie Soar
Photos courtesy blickfang
Slow Food – by now all of us have heard of this counterattack launched against fast and processed food. But what exactly is Slow Food? Founded in Italy in 1986 by publisher Carlo Petrini, the movement offers an alternative to rapidly growing fast food chains by using only regional, seasonal and traditional products.
Not only is slow food healthy and ecologically safe, but by supporting small, local businesses it is also economically responsible. By now the non-profit member-supported Slow Food Association is spread over 150 countries worldwide, and counts over 100,000 members in a network of 2,000 food communities. Together they fight against the disappearance of, and disinterest in, local food traditions inherent to the rise of a fast living and eating culture.
This is anything but a new trend. It is in fact a return to times when food wasn’t superabundant and genetically modified, but when people found value in the rituals of growing, harvesting and eating their food together.
Caina, in Stockholm’s Nobis Hotel, is one of these authentic Slow Food refuges. Here chef Luciano Aru and gastronomic director Stefano Catenacci serve classic Italian dishes from different regions of their home country, based on seasonal and local ingredients. The small but frequently changing menu ensures the sensitive care and superior quality that Slow Food stands for.
Mouthwatering dishes such as scallops with crispy fennel truffle and extra virgin olive oil, ricotta cheese stuffed ravioli with lemon and rosemary, or beefsteak with garlic fried mushrooms and Barolo wine sauce can all be savoured with a glass of exquisite Italian wine from the restaurant’s selected wine list.
Offering delicious antipasti and authentic Italian cuisine in an elegant but yet warm and welcoming ambience, Caina is a Slow Food oasis for a stress-free lunch break, and also a very nice venue for an intimate dinner among friends.
After a night in the calmly sophisticated atmosphere of White Line Hotels edit The Nobis Hotel, Caina is ready to ease you into the day with ecologically sound Swedish breakfast including homemade foods, breads and pastries.
Contributing writer: Julia Schröder
Images courtesy Caina/The Nobis Hotel