Paradise on earth

The more islands we visit, the more we are in love with the Perhentian Islands in Malaysia.

Are you part of a distributed team?

Team activities, courses and guides for companies with virtual teams!

Vietnamese Art

Propaganda posters, paintings and sculptures.

Happy Wesak

Procesión budista en Malasia

On how Asia reminds me of my childhood

Flowers, construction, poorly paved roads,...

Monday, March 24, 2014

Missing Malaysia Flight MH370, what are they thinking?

I love this picture because it shows the exact opposite of what I say in my posts, it shows a muslim lady enjoying a Chinese budist celebration. She was having fun, taking pictures and smiling! Thanks!
Malaysian Airlines sends an SMS to the families of the victims, that are mostly chinese, it seems very cold, but this is how chinese are treated every day in this country. If you want to learn more about the relation between the Chinese population in Malaysia and the people in power, mostly Malay, you can read some of these posts:

What is going on in Malaysia? An explanaition of the different ethnic groups that coexist in this country. With links to my posts about the Chinese, the Muslim and the Indian communities and what they have in common.

Happy Wesak or how to forget to cut the traffic during the most important chinese religious celebration.




Sunday, March 23, 2014

Missing Asia with keys on our back



I made this project for my Coursera-CalArts class. I hope you enjoy it!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

10 influences

I am taking a Coursera class and they ask us our 10 most important influences, motors, builders and destroyers in my life. Here we go:

Tintin:


http://us.tintin.com/
The possibility to explore the world

Dr Slump anime:



From Arale I take the colours, the absurdity and the happiness.

Gilda:


From Gilda I take the capacity to dare to be different.

Jana Sterbak


http://www.janasterbak.com/
From her I take the boldness and the possibility of uglyness

Born to run:


I take the strenght to GO

Mies van der Rohe:



http://www.archdaily.com/59816/ad-classics-iit-master-plan-and-buildings-mies-van-der-rohe/
My notion of beauty

Jaume Plensa



http://jaumeplensa.com/
Power from the calm


Miquel Barceló

 Cap de peix by Miequle Barceló

How it is important to know one's nature and explore it so things come easier.

Maus by Art Spiegelman:

I haven't been able to put my jaw back in place since I read it.

South East Asia:

And how they make things look pretty.

Friday, March 07, 2014

Mercat d'artesania, tallers,... del Japó a Barcelona!

Del 6 al 28 de març a MITTE Barcelona (c/Bairèn 86) es celebra un any més Korekara Japon!
Hi haurà vàries activitats com mercat d'artesania japonesa, tallers, concerts, exposicions, etc...  Podeu trobar més informació info a la web de Korekara Japon.

La Yoko, una artista japonesa que fa uns dibuixos preciosos serà al mercat d'artesania (Koreichi) amb bosses estampades i també amb coses fetes a mà pels afectats del Tsunami. Ella hi serà el dia 6 i 15 a la tarda.
Horari del mercat d'artesania: dijous.divendres 17-21.30h i dissabte 10-21.30h. 
Us recomano que mireu el programa i us hi passeu!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Is Japan expensive?

When I said that I was going to Japan, most of my friends mentioned Fukushima and right after that they said that Japan was very expensive. Surprisingly eating and sleeping in Japan has been really cheap, making the opverall cost of my trip lower than I expected. Here's some ways to make your trip to Japan cheaper:

Transport

  • Fly to Japan is very cheap, if you are lucky you can find a ticket for less than 500€ or $600. I visited Japan in the winter and it was very cold. I would not recomment visiting in the winter time, better the spring and the autumn. Tickets before June and after September are still cheap.
  • Plan ahead and buy your JR train Pass in a way that makes sense, you can also buy passes for only certain regions.

Sightseeing

In Japan you don't have to pay to use the toilet but for the rest you have to pay. Research about the museums, shrines, palaces and gardens that interest you the most and visit only those.
Remember that there are alternative ways to get to know a country, rent a bicycle, go hiking or go for a walk around the city where the local older generation goes to exercise. Amazing things will happen to you when you get out of the beaten path, just don't forget to greet everybody along the way with a loud "Konichiwa!".

Eating

The food is amazing and really cheap. You can easily eat a full meal consisting of a main dish (rice or noodle soup) and gyoza for 5€ or $7, even in Tokyo. The drinks (water or tea) are on the house! This cheap food will save you so much money that you will be able to slurge in something more fancy every once in a while!
It is a little bit sad but I must admit that some of the best food I had was in train stations! Big  train stations like Kyoto or Tokyo have amazing and cheap food!
$7 or 5€ meal in super tourist town Nara, amazing, uh? The cold udon was yummy!

Sleeping 

Hotels and ryokans can be expensive, specially in the big cities. I have found that renting a studio is cheaper than staying in a hotel. So here's the alternatives:
  • Renting a studio for yourself, will come with kitchen and full bathroom. Not more than $40 or 30€/night.
  • Airbnb: Japan is slowly opening to Airbnb, stay with a local in their house and have a full cultural experience!
  • Capsule hotels: haven't tried them yet, so I can't say.
  • HelpX: for some days live with a Japanese family, pay no rent, eat for free and in exchange work with them on their business. Win-win!
Stay with a Japanese family and learn about their culture

Souvenirs

This is my weak point, I haven't been able to find cheap souvenirs... any ideas?

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Light Parade in Sioux Falls

A year and a half ago I posted some photos under the name Feliz Wesak explaining our experience in a parade in Melaka, Malaysia. Yesterday I had a very similar experience but this time in Sioux Falls.

Wesak was a religious parade, full of budas and budhist symbols. The lights parade in Sioux Falls had no budas but in stead it had:

* A couple of Religious related floats (Christian).


*Most of the floats where businesses, from a local furniture store to a hospital. Some adore Budha, others use parades to get closer to their comunity. Nothing wrong with that!

Local Radio Station

*Dances, here the cheerleaders make little human castles and in Melaka the chinese community was dancing with dragons make of paper and baloons:

*Pet associations with really funny dressed dogs:

*Local high school playing drums (similar to the ones in Melaka but not dressed as well)

*Fireman 

*Political: The mayor and the governor

The mayor of Sioux Falls, SD

*Association asking for a public covered swimmingpool

*The hot air baloon association was the one that had the best idea, with the fire for the baloons they would make the air really warm!


*Something curious to me were the painted snow plows!


This is half of the front of a snow plow, cool uh?

*The public was devoted in both places, in Malaysia there was a lot of people that felt like that moment was sacred and they had put a lot of effort into that parade. In Sioux Falls people where devoted because it was freezing cold and they were there with their blankets, hats, gloves and chairs.

Devoted parade lovers
Thank you to the organizers of both parades!! I love parades!!

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Surprising illustrations by Scott McKowen for 1602

I am currently taking a Coursera.org course on Comic Books and Graphic Novels so I took advantage of the opportunity and I thought I would treat myself to some Neil Gaiman. The surprise of the book where the covers by Scott McKowen, an illustrator that I had seen in the New Yorker but not payed much attention to. Here's some of the covers and I totally recommend reading 1602, for Marvel fans and non-fans too. :-)





Monday, September 30, 2013

Presents

When you least expect it, life gives you a present. Today it was in the shape of ceramic pieces.
I went to see the author of the only pieces that decorate my life Yoko Kataoka and as guests she had a great couple. Tom and Kanoko were there after finishing an exhibition of Tom's pieces in the Akashi Gallery in Barcelona and as a present they brought 2 small and beautiful ceramic pieces.

Why did I like them so much?

  • Their faces where very abstract and because of that they were very powerful. You know when undefined sculpture is extremely touching? Exactly like that!
  • Expressive bodies. You couldn't see their facial expressions but their body was speaking so much!
  • Strokes: you could see the strokes that they are made of, not too much, not too little, just enough to help the sculpture more communicative.
  • Colour of the pieces. They had colour and then a black patina. Here you can find more information about his technique.
  • Posture: Tom tells us that they are admiring a fireworks show that took place in 2011 as a display of solidarity with the survivors of the earthquake and tsunami. You can read more about it in the gallery's page. But like in all art pieces, it is good to know what the artist was thinking but it is not the only way to read the piece. In this case the pieces talked to me about wondering, about stopping time, about slowing down, about enjoying, about being amazed,... so many things!
  • Size: I wouldn't mind to see them bigger but I can see how they might loose some effect if they are bigger. Maybe they will go Juan Muñoz's size and everybody will admire them!
Tomorrow if I think about them they will probably tell me more things, but this is all I got today! You can find more info in Tom's webpage.

Sorry about the photo, it doesn't show the power of the sculptures, if I find a better one I will post it! 


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Cradle to cradle design

McDonough and his team are doing some great work with urbanism, architecture and design. Worth watching!

Best quote of the video:
Imagine this design assignment: Design something that makes oxygen, sequesters carbon, fixes nitrogen, distills water, accrues solar energy as fuel, makes complex sugars and food, creates microclimates, changes colors with the season, and self replicates. Why don’t we knock that down and write on it?

Monday, August 26, 2013

How much do you know about salt water fish?

We know that it is good for us to eat fish but how much do we know about the fish we eat?  

During my stay in Palamós (Spain) I have been able to go twice to Espai del Peix, a museum where the information panels are not on the walls but on tables that are also used as eating tables where you can sit down and enjoy some of their yummy show-cookings. As a fisherman's town, Palamós wants to preserve their most precious treasure: fish.

Their main goal is to educate about fish. Espai del Peix (Fish place) focuses in teaching people about the types of fish that are not very well known and that are as good as the rest, they teach us how to cook them, their characteristics, their substitutes and some other fun facts.

Some of my friends try to eat only the vegetables that are in season, because they taste better and to save the environment little by little with responsible actions. A lot of times, what is good for the environment, it is also good for our pocket and good for our health, so here's a list of the different fishes that you can find in the mediterranean sea by month. If you buy fresh fish when they are in season, you will do good to the ecosystem, save money and you will have a varied diet:

Mediterranean Sea
Remember you can also buy them when they are in season, freeze them and enjoy them throught the year!

If you find calendars of the Atlantic, Pacific and other seas I will gladly post them.

Bon appétit!

For the ones that speak catalan, here's a list of the recipes.