The contents of your head colour the world around you
Regular readers of Jakartass should know that my central contention is that nostalgia is never what it used to be. I have no desire to return to live or work in London. Or Paris. Or Barcelona. Or Bangkok. Every city has its pleasures and frustrations.
What I do miss and what I think ~ perhaps 'hope' is a better word ~ is achievable here in Jakarta is a greater sense of belonging and, above all, civic pride. It's not just the major projects which are important; the little moments of communal courtesy and privacy have immense value.
has spent the past five years wandering around London taking pictures of things that are so familiar and obvious that they fall below the usual threshold of people's attention. Also One man and his blog
is presently photographing Soho on a daily basis. Hey, there are pleasant parks for reading a book and lunching in.
Have you ever spent time stuck in a Jakarta traffic jam at night and wondered who the artists are who've created those stringed fairy light structures? Visual candy floss maybe, but they're a pleasant diversion. I assume it's the city government which is responsible, so praise where it's due. And perhaps they'd like to check out the Urban Trees of San Diego
in California for an imaginative use of sidewalks. Some alternative photographs/viewpoints of this public art can be found at this blog
, thus demonstrating that art should be involving.
By way of contrast, there is an exhibition in London of the paintings of Edward Hopper
. "America has never seemed as baffling and alien as it does at this moment - except through the eyes of Hopper