Wednesday, August 31, 2016

China Magic

Tomorrow the light show "China Magic – Festival of Light" will celebrate its European premiere on Vienna’s Danube Island: Up to 20m tall buildings, dragons, famous personalities and artworks in silk and bamboo have been set up and will be illuminated. The festival will also offer an insight into the typical culture of China with dance shows, music and food. Chinese lantern festivals have a history going back over 2.000 years and traditionally bring the New Year’s festival lasting several days to a close. The show on the Danube Island involves 25 km of silk, 20 tonnes of bamboo and steel as well as 18.000 LED lamps. It has taken 30 days to set up the more than 30 artworks. During my bicycle tours I passed by several times and could watch how they were set up. The festival runs through October 9.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Academy of Fine Arts

The Academy of Fine Arts Vienna was founded in 1692 as a private academy by the court-painter Peter Strudel. With his death in 1714, the academy temporarily closed. In 1726 the academy was reestablished as Imperial and Royal Court Academy of painters, sculptors and architecture, a public Institution. In 1772 the organisational structure was reformed and all existing art schools were integrated into the Imperial and Royal Unified Academy of Fine Arts. In 1872 Emperor Franz Joseph I approved a statute making the academy the supreme government authority for the arts. A new building, designed by Theophil Hansen, was constructed in the course of the layout of the Ringstraße boulevard. On 3 April 1877, the present-day building on Schillerplatz in the city center was inaugurated.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Presidential Rave 2.0

Every six years Austria votes a new President. The last elections took place in April and May 2016. Norbert Hofer, the candidate of the Freedom Party (FPÖ) won the first round, but was narrowly defeated by the Green-backed Alexander Van der Bellen in the run-off. After an appeal by the Freedom Party's leader the results were invalidated by the Constitutional Court due to formal irregularities (several counting centres had begun to process postal votes on the eve of the election rather than on the day after, as Austrian electoral law requires) only one week before Van der Bellen was due to be sworn into office. The revote will take place on October 2, and the election campaign has just restarted... Yesterday there were several concerts in different locations, a rally and an after party (under the title "presidential rave 2.0") organised by the supporters of Van der Bellen. I happened to pass by one of the concerts in Stephansplatz.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Wedding Pavilion

In Vienna there are a lot of locations for weddings held away from registry offices. One of them is the wedding pavilion in the Hirschstetten Flower Gardens. This elegant garden was created especially for weddings. The white, pink and blue flowers there have particularly long-lasting blooms, and the entry points to the garden are framed with rose arches.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Flower Arrangements

The Hirschstetten Flower Gardens, the cultivation gardens of the Municipal Department which is in charge of the Viennese parks and gardens, is located in the 22nd district and open to the public. The visitors are welcomed by these colourful flower arrangements.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Calle Libre #5

That's the finished mural by Rodrigo Branco. He didn't bring much colour to the wall...

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Calle Libre #4

Here'a another mural - still as work in progress - created  during the recent "Calle Libre - Festival for Urban Aesthetics". It's a work by Brazilian artist Rodrigo Branco.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Vienna - a Liveable City

The yearly Economist Intelligence Unit's "Global Liveability Ranking" gauges liveability in terms of the severity of challenges that might affect a person's lifestyle in any given location, using five key criteria to rate each city: stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure. According to the recent ranking Vienna is the second most liveable city! That's reason to celebrate and have a drink!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Sunday Flowers #200

"Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadows.
It's what the sunflowers do." - Helen Keller

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Donaucity at Night

Usually I return home from my evening bicycle tour when the sun sets. Yesterday I was a little late, so here is an evening view of the Donaucity and a riverboat.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Overgrown Façade

Except for the ground floor the façade of this building is completely overgrown with Virgina creeper. A real eye-catcher!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Calle Libre #3

Here's another mural that was created during the recent "Calle Libre - Festival for Urban Aesthetics". It's a work by three members (Frau Isa, Nychos and Rookie) of The Weird, a crew of ten artists spread all over Germany and Austria, founded in 2011.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Calle Libre #2

And that's how the mural by Stinkfish looked like two days later. It's not the first time that he worked in Vienna as you can see here, here, here and here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Calle Libre #1

Last week Vienna hosted for the third time the "Calle Libre - Festival for Urban Aesthetics" : Eight street artists were invited to create murals in public spaces mostly in the 6th and 7th district. I think this is a really great idea to promote street art and to bring some colour to "boring" walls. In this photo you can see the Mexican born artist "Stinkfish"
working on a mural.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Sunday Flowers #199

"Nature never hurries. Atom by atom, little by little she achieves her work." -  Ralph Waldo Emerson

Saturday, August 13, 2016

I Would Love to Sit There

Usually in summer I take an evening bicycle ride on the Danube Island, but when the weather is too variable or it's too windy and I still want to move, I take a walk along the Old Danube. The last time I discovered this deck chair on a privately owned platform floating on the water. It must be great to sit there!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Chubby Women

From August 1 to August 10, the  "Chubby Women" sculptures by Chinese artist Xu Hongfei were on show in the main courtyard of the MuseumsQuartier. Hongfei has been touring the world with his sculptures since 2013.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Lost in Time

I saw this eye-catching couple last Saturday in the city center. I guess they headed to some event...

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Sunset Obsession #30

Didn't you miss my sunset photos? I just noticed that I showed you the last one on June 24...

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Demel's Summer Display

The current display of the K. u. K. (Imperial and Royal) Court Confectionary Bakery "Demel" shows three huge sundaes. The confectionary doesn't only sell cakes and other desserts, but also ice cream. Well, actually in the very beginning Demel was an ice cream parlor and gradually extended its range of products. I have never tasted Demel's ice cream... Does that mean that I am a bad Viennese?

Monday, August 8, 2016

Ice Cream Festival

On Saturday and Sunday the first Vienna Ice Cream Festvial took place in Burggarten. Eleven ice cream and frozen yogurt parlors (three of them from Germany) presented their range of ice creams. A good possibility for an ice cream tasting! For those who needed in between some spicy snack, there were also "normal" foodtrucks. I passed by in the late Saturday afternoon when the park was crowded with ice cream aficionados.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Do You Like Burgers?

There's a new burger restaurant in the city center. I'm not crazy about burgers, but I couldn't help taking a photograph of the eye-catching cow in front of the restaurant.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Former Civic Armoury

We are still on the Am Hof square. The central fire station is located on one side of this square. The fire equipment used to be stored in the adjoining Vienna Civic Armoury, built in 1530. Initially an unadorned, functional building, it was redesigned in 1731/32 into a splendid building with a Baroque façade which shows the Habsburg shield and allegorical figures created by the Italian sculptor Lorenzo Mattielli.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Am Hof #2

Here's another view of the square Am Hof. A grandaunt of mine is living here - not a bad address...

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Am Hof #1

Am Hof is the name of the largest square in the city center. The history of the square goes back to the Roman era, when a garrison was built here. In the 12th century the Babenberg duke Henry II Jasomirgott built a castle on the Roman foundations. The castle was the residence of the dukes of Austria from 1156 until 1220. The square in front of the castle was first used for jousting tournaments and later became a market square.
This is the view of the square during my ride on the ladder of a fire truck 30m above the ground.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Let's sit outside

As I have already told you gastronomers are allowed by law to open their outdoor areas only during a certain period (March - November). This will possibly change, the outdoor areas can then be open throughout the whole year, but the gastronomers will have to pay considerably higher fees for every square meter and also for every heating mantle. The new law is to be enacted in autumn. Let's sit outside as long the gastronomers can afford the "schanigarten", as we call the outdoor areas in German.

Monday, August 1, 2016

August Theme Day: My City's Skyline

This is Vienna's skyline if you are looking from the Old Danube into town. You can't see the city center because it's too far away and all these modern buildings are in the way.
Click here to view thumbnails of all participants in the theme day.