In loving memory of Rodrigo & Christian
Managing Director Valentina Simon Editing and Translation Casilda Braga Marketing & Public Relations Carolina García (MIA) Lola Piñeyrúa (NYC) Natalia Romay & Matias Romano (MDEO) Graphic Design & General Editing Valentina Simon Photo Editing Allison Badia Art Lola Piñeyrúa Moira Vázquez Senta Achée Pablo Silva Contributing Reporters Alejandra Brea Jimena Chiarino Contributing Writers Juan Pablo Badano Alejandra Brea Daniela Prado Luna Muñoz Cecilia Rodríguez Nicolás García Analía Matyszczyk John DeWitt Joseph Perrin Bridges Aderhold Contributing Photographers Joel Meinholz Amalia Branaa Joseph Perrin Eduardo Dao Brad Burt Alejandra Pérez Lin Anita Secco Soledad García Saravia Mike Atwood Mariana Atchugarry Valentina Simon Maximiliano Cambón Moira Vázquez Pep Johnson Josh Stewart Agustín Piña Bridges Aderhold Web Design RKBN.net Publicity firstname.lastname@example.org Subscriptions email@example.com Contact firstname.lastname@example.org www.AlleyTimes.net +00 1 (786) 712.1480 4
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OCTOBER 2010 / 1st YEAR / 1st EDITION COVER: Original photo by Amalia Branaa, illustration by Adriana De Ferrari
ARTICLES + CRITIQUES = 08. “Alley Times” by Alejandra Brea / 10. “Pura Vida” by Juan Pablo Badano / 12. “Beyond living and dreaming there is something more important: waking up” by Luna Muñoz / 80. “Avocado: a fruit of innumerable benefits” by Daniela Prado / 82. “Inception - A rather unprofessional commentary” by Cecilia Rodríguez / 84. “The Divine Samurai” by Nicolás García / 85. “Caro Criado, Design Pioneer” by Natalia Romay / 88. “Tobacco Road - A bar, a home” by Valentina Simon / 90. “Mama Roux - That good old bar” by Natalia Romay / 92. La Licorne “The magic of being moved” by Analía Matyszcyk / PHOTOGRAPHY = 14. Talking Streets, Urban Literature / 16. Miami, FL - Brooklyn, NY / 18. Buceo, MVD - Ciudad Vieja, MVD / 20. “Get out there” by Joseph Perrin / 66. Photos by Joel Meinholz / 78. “Nowhere Land” by Anita Secco / 96. “I Make Pictures” by Alejandra Pérez Lin / 98. Something You Can’t Live Without by Amalia Branaa ART + MUSIC = 26. “The Skateboarding Dinosaur” Gabriel Callico / 30. “Life Seeker” Lola Piñeyrúa / 36 “Everything looks better framed” Anthony Genovese / 42. Journey into the seed : ALFALFA speaks / 46. Miami’s Local Artists Support / 48. Simple, tripped & improvised: Juan Branaa / 77. Illustrations by Senta Achée / SKATEBOARDING = 51. Luis Pérez (MIA, FL) / 52. Forrest Kirby (MIA, FL) / 56. Gato Silva (MDEO, UY) / 58. James Coleman, Interview (MIA, FL) / 60. Jimmy Lannon (MIA, FL) / 62. Brain Downey (SF, CA) / 74. ”Decks à la carte” by Sweepers Art Decks (MDEO, UY) /
AllEY TIMES by Alejandra Brea
It could have been anywhere in the city, but ever since we can remember alleys have been our meeting point and the perfect place to spend whole evenings and nights. The idea of creating a universe in a narrow street that had no way out for many fascinated us back then and today, some years later, we decided to get together and relive it. Magically and with a cigarette in our hands, the image of a biologic face ceased to exist in our thoughts and in that space filled with smoke and ideas we drew our faces with the mind and the soul. The air seduced our skins wrapped in social uniforms and in between laughter and almost delusional conclusions we put clothes aside and climbed the wall. From above the city was small and people distant to our reality were as normal as they were dull. The effect of the flowers was intense, but the trip we were experiencing was not the result of a live and penetrating substance, but of a dead conscience which was coming to life again in our spirits. A conscience of supreme freedom and interior peace, the conscience of misfits in the good sense of the word, the spirit of those who rebel against standards, against normality, against categorization. So surrounded by society, on a level where nature alone is the kingdom, we reached a trance between the city and the flowers, and we said goodbye not knowing that that encounter would remain intact in our minds until the day of the apocalypse of the soul, returning to the alley times.
PURA VIDA By Juan Pablo Badano
With the pleasure I find in writing and motivated to fulfill my wishes as soon as possible after realizing how short life is, due to the loss of two of my closest friends in a car accident, there begins the creation of this writing dedicated and grateful to both of them, to all my friends and family and to nature (flora, fauna and human beings). What you are about to read is my way of seeing reality and truth. In the exchange of thoughts between different people is where I believe we approach truth and reality. What I write is a result of my personality, which is built out of the environment I live in: friends, social, geographical and technological context, which justifies the reason for my dedication and gratitude on the first paragraph. This passage is about life in all its expressions: philosophical, social, political, seen from an objective, logical and intuitive point of view. Based on different reflections it attempts to awaken the vital functions in us. We all have a reason or purpose inside, which is difficult to find and to follow. We must make decisions to know ourselves better and without knowing what our essence is, learn about it. Everyone has something to say; if only everyone could share it. I am lucky to be able to do so. I hope this inspires you to write your own passage and thus reciprocate wisdom, the spirit, life and joy. First reflection: How we perceive time... stop time and you will be free. It is interesting to realize how we lose interest in life when we notice that our everyday activities have no other point but to entertain us, making us feel good because they make us perceive time as static or inexistent. Or what is the same, it does not matter what we are doing because if what we are doing distracts 10
us, it generates chemicals in our body which order us to keep doing what we are doing and that ALL IS WELL! The problem with this is that many times we can be doing with our lives what we really should not be doing. We could do more good to the world through our actions. We must not think that individual satisfaction is the ultimate goal, and that we are capable of obtaining only that. We must improve relationships with others and build common good, so as not to feel that our life is wasted, throwing it away in pointless activities. By this I understand activities which are not only useless to generate well-being for the world as a whole, but which might as well harm it. We should change our activities for those which do good, thus generating the necessary distraction to forget everything, while we do our bit to make EVERYTHING better. I like to think of the idea that the more we work in activities which have a positive influence in the world, we may reach, as we grow older, the feeling that we are coming to terms with death and that when our moment comes we will not be alarmed and it will be just another peaceful day in our lives. On the contrary, if we work on activities which destabilize existence, they will inevitably destabilize our life more and more to a state of insanity. Not a positive insanity, but that which derives from the perception of many thoughts at once, without being able to take one at a time and thus having a lot of unclassified information in our heads, which ultimately could make us talk nonsense and truly fear death. We all have inside the actual decision to be taken in any situation. One might be the good one and the other might be the bad one, some better and some worse. What humans have as an automated mechanism is the ability to make the right decision without much
analysis. This decision will always advocate peace, love and care of nature. When we insert thoughts tainted by power, fame or money in automated decisions is when we start making bad choices and both the planet and us slowly begin to feel it. We create our reality, from the imaginary to the tangible.
do as many activities as possible which directly or indirectly look after the world, thus justifying our existence. The justification of our being is reached by doing those activities which arise from the depths of our being or essence. Let us listen to our conscience to know ourselves better and slowly approach our balance and our planet’s.
If you believe me, agree with me, or have had experiences in which the feeling of stopping time generates peace and well-being in us, let us
Photography: Maximiliano Cambón
“Beyond living and dreaming there is something more important: waking up” (Antonio Machado) By Luna Muñoz
A couple of days ago I read an article about a couple. The peculiarity of the story was that, while they were looking for photos of their childhood for their wedding, she showed her fiancé a picture of her family at Disney World and he recognized a man with his son, who was just passing by at the background of the photo: it was his father who was pushing the baby carriage he was in. They both lived in separate countries, shared the same vacation and, decades later, in another part of the globe, they met and got married. A few days before running into this article, I had been thinking about how great it would be, once we believe we have found “the love of our life”, to have some sort of video showing us all those times when we passed by each other or were really close by and did not meet. In part to be able to keep dreaming about the notion of “fate”, partly to hallucinate about us being “made for each other”, or perhaps (why not?) simply to be a part of one of those love stories we whimper over in movies. Sometimes we listen to a song, watch a movie or run into a good book and it touches us deeply, with stories with which we may have nothing in common. Who did not say “awww” with the image of Forrest Gump and his son tilting their heads in front of the TV, or with Chaplin’s “The Kid”? Who did not cry watching “Bambi” or “The Lion King”? Who did not choose a superhero to play with friends? Or who, being over 20, went to see a Science Fiction movie and did not hallucinate all
the way home about being able to grow claws out of their hands, fly, or fight with laser blades? However, we are none of these characters, nor lead the same lives as those in these stories (sometimes, not even similar). What we do have, which is what makes us react to these things, is compassion for good people, fear of losing a loved one, the wish to be useful for those who need us, friends with whom we would fight side by side, and even the illusion of being untouchable when somebody stronger than us intends to do us wrong. Fiction makes us see who we are in unexpected ways, and it provides us with the tools to daydream about a thrilling life. But, what happens when life brings fiction to our door? When someone we love finally gets what makes them happy, when we lose who we love, when we put our blade next to our friends’ to help them overcome that bad moment, and they succeed? Or when your wife shows you a photo of a happy moment of her childhood and you realize you were a part of it, as small as it may have been? Perhaps we cannot grow claws out of our hand, or fly with superpowers, but we should never stop daydreaming, because for sure life has something for us, maybe a little less fictitious, but certainly more amazing.
constant change 13
Buceo, Montevideo, Uruguay
Ciudad Vieja, Montevideo, Uruguay
Mark it under familiar echoes. “You need to get out there”, they always say. True indeed, but out where? Everywhere? All at once? It seems daunting in a way, but in actuality it’s quite simple. Looking at these photos from Chile and Argentina made me remember that. I remember the awe-inspiring views, the shared moments between friends, the journey through the unknown. The sense of being, of living. Exhilarating and humbling. Life offers us many chances of feeling these things. I’m fortunate for this realization. Many people stay put for their entirety, wasting away, waiting for something that never happens. Wondering “what if”. The universe has a lot more to offer to these people, oftentimes in their own backyard. Seek it. Live it. Put yourself out there.
Photography: Eduardo Dao 26
The Skateboarding Dinosaur GABRIEL CALLICO When and how did you decide that the art of tattooing was your thing? Since I was young I stood out in plastic arts. I always knew that I would do something related to that for a living. Long before I took an interest in tattoos I studied painting and drawing. The first time I saw a professional tattoo I was very impressed. Perfect lines, scumbling, an image on the skin which would last forever... That was when I realized that I wanted to change paper and fabric for actual human skin. So after many years of self-teaching I got to produce that magic and even today I am still perfecting the technique. Being an artist to you, is it simply when you tattoo or do you devote much time to art itself, outside the tattoo world? Tattooing constantly (contrary to what one might think) rusts you as regards drawing. To loosen up it is good to create in similar techniques, such as colored pencils, watercolors and acrylics. I am very into the Skateboarding world, how did this influence your creativity? Skateboarding, before turning into the science of trichology, was a movement rich in graphic art, music and countercultural attitude. Most skaters ended up being involved in some art branch. Ideally a skateboarder is a freethinker, always defying the established order inside and outside skateboarding. Working in this business is something I owe to the proximity of skateboarding and tattoos in Buenos Aires during the 90’s. What is your position in the Skateboarding world? I would call my position Skateboarding Dinosaur! It is a privilege for me to keep skateboarding today, along with new generations. Skateboarding is a very special motivation, nobody forces anyone to skate. It is an activity free of rules and schedules,
where everyone can do and say whatever they want, where there is neither envy nor bad attitudes, only healthy competition and mutual support. Tell me about the first tattoo you designed or made. I tied three sewing needles with thread so that the drawing ink was housed in the middle and as I punctured, by capillary action, it came down to the upper layers of the dermis. My good friend Mauricio (Kolenc) gave a portion of his skin and I punctured a circle of approximately 0.4 inches in diameter. The funny thing was that when another skater labeled “tooth” saw it, he made his own interpretation of it: “That’s a cool bullet wound!” I was surprised by such a gangster perception of a circle, being the simplest figure. A good baptism for my first tattoo! After such a long time designing and tattooing, how would you define your style? I have different facets: new school, neotraditional, biomechanical, realist, oriental, some tribal, fusion of styles (no more than 2 because it comes out bizarre). But what I excel in the most is my cubist facet. It is a style not done by many. Anyway, in order to survive in this business you must be versatile. Commercial tattoos are usually images taken from the internet, designed by people outside the tattoo world, and you can find anything. What happens in most cases is that images are too complex to be tattooed so small. Do you plan on doing this for the rest of your life? I lead my life without plans, second by second, but if I do not have any physical disabilities, then there is no doubt that this is what I will do for the rest of my life. I am lucky to do well doing something that is natural in me.
life seeker. LOLA PIÑEYRÚA When did you start painting? Since I was young, I was still in primary school. After class I would go to the Caldeiro sisters’ Plastic Arts Workshop in Pocitos. I will never forget the 3 or 4 hour sessions in that garage impregnated with the smell of thinner and turpentine. It was an escape from the daily routine; a table full of colors and wooden boxes, country and decoupage techniques. I had a great time. Later I changed to the workshop of Laura Rodríguez Delgado, a genius, a born artist. It was with her that I learned several techniques and this passion awakened in me. She is an amazing person who knew how to guide me in my early beginnings. How did your artistic mind change when you moved from Montevideo to Brooklyn? Well, this is hard to put into words, because actually my head gave a 360° turn in every way when I moved to New York. My first experience was in Manhattan. I moved with my best friend, we decided to begin an adventure and change our routines, which immediately led to a life change. I could not go back anymore. I found the courage and the strength I did not have in Uruguay. I had to set out on my own, stand up for myself, handle situations I was not used to dealing with. Take charge and be my protector. The truth is I changed a lot, my brain expanded and I found myself in a new world with thousands of possibilities and paths. I could be myself completely uncensored. It was then that I decided to devote myself fully to painting, to take advantage of the situation and what surrounded me. Where do you find more inspiration, in Montevideo or in Brooklyn? Brooklyn is definitely an amazing place. Color-splotched walls, stencils, graffiti everywhere you look. It is a trashy but bright place, where a variety of people, culture and energies is mixed. One never ceases to be inspired here. It is an open book. Developing my profession in the United States I obviously found inspiration here, but today Montevideo gets to me. I would be greatly inspired there too, I would see things in a different way, I would try to give expression to colors and
memories, my roots. People with a fighting spirit, venturous and creative young people, life seekers. Sometimes I close my eyes and try to imagine the coasts and the country, that freshwater river. I love my country. Where do you study? At The Art Students League of New York. An amazing place in the middle of the big apple, half a block away from Central Park. I feel very blessed for having been accepted to this American institution. The League originated in 1875, forming renowned artist such as Georgia O’Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein and Norman Rockwell, among others. The League was created by artists for artists. It is a great place where oil painting, watercolors and acrylic techniques prevail. Very old school, I would say. It is an atelier school, where the professor is a contemporary artist who guides you depending on your current. There are no margins or discriminations; everyone expresses themselves in their own way and the best of you is revealed. There are three areas of discipline: painting, sculpture and printmaking. It is a four-year degree. My idea is to get involved in all the areas and take part in the group exhibitions and workshops they offer. Where do you want to take your profession as an artist? I never considered myself as an artist; it is a word I cannot handle yet. I simply have a great passion and am trying to take it into another level. It is a very difficult world with broad parameters where everyone competes, especially in New York, where the term “artist” is used every two sentences. I am not an ambitious person and I do not handle money; I focus on doing something well and developing myself completely. I want fabric to reflect my head, to smudge my ideas and create. What are you passionate about? Love and people with projection. I am passionate about life, the air, a cold beer and good rock n roll. Passion for creating, being loved, loving and dreaming. Doing what I want when I want with whomever I want... respect and tolerance. Life is so short that we better have passion and conviction, because we are just passing by... 31
â€œEverything looks better framedâ€? When did you start tattooing? I do not remember exactly. In December, possibly two or three years ago, I started piercing and then I started tattooing. I was always drawing. What do you enjoy about tattooing? I like the art of it and knowing that people choose my work, whether it is a drawing or a design. They are different from those who choose a typical tattoo out of a book, like a butterfly or a crappy name. They like what you do and you do it forever, that is the best of it. Is that the difference you find between art on paper and art on skin? Yes, basically. Did you use to live at the tattoo shop? Yes, I used to. We were four artists living together, Gonchi was one of them. We got along well, the job was very interesting and it was good while it lasted, but at some point it all got too crazy and well, now I cannot deny it was fun. What do you feel when you draw? I draw a lot based on references or things that I like, but I am not always keen on what I do. Like this I am drawing right now, for
instance, I do not like it but I know that something is developing so I go on until it is finished, I am not sure when, because in the end it always results in something good. How did you learn how to tattoo? It was a connection. First I stepped into the shop and then I was tattooing. There are people who start with a homemade machine, but I started off very relaxed, making piercings in a tattoo shop. I was friends with Colo, so it was easier, although I did not know a thing when I started. I did everything wrong until I learned and then I left the shop and I kept learning more and more. What was the first thing you tattooed? The first tattoo I made was the New York Yankees logo, all in black, and to be the first time it came out alright, very right actually. It was a long time ago, perhaps if I saw it now completely healed I would think differently, but I never saw it again. I liked it and the second one I made too, it was a tribal. What was the first tattoo you made of your own design? The first time I tattooed my art it was a gal with a skull face and I made it to a friend of mine. He liked it and I wanted to tattoo it. A
lot of people do not like what I do, especially my tattoos because they are old school style, the bloody old school, crazy things, you know? Do you prefer black or color tattoos? I prefer both, they are different. Sometimes black and white, sometimes color. It depends on the person and his/her type of skin, what color, which style. Color is not for everyone; in pale skin it looks very good. My arm is all tattooed in color but I’m mad. Anyway, it depends on the art you are going to make and on the person, things change. Were your tattoos made by friends? Most of them. I have works by Colo, Fede, Tomy, who are the guys from the tattoo shop, and a shark made by Mikey, a friend of mine who works at another tattoo shop. Although I do have a tattoo by a guy who is not my friend. Did you like the design? No, no, not much really. What is your design method? I like to do three designs for each thing. I add them something, like series. I have Mickey Mouse throwing up and Tigger doing some kind of jump, all screwed up. I want to do one more, like Piglet doing something, but I have not done it. I gave away many of my drawings. I paint and then I give it to someone, except for the first one because I liked it. And you do not sell your art? Who will buy it? I can see myself selling some of my series of three which have a frame. Many things do not have frames and people are so stupid that they do not see a work of art if it not framed. They think something
like “OK, it is a drawing”, but once you frame it they say “that is very good”, which makes me want to say “you idiots”. “Everything looks better framed” is a very good quote I like to repeat, I say it to my friends all the time. Tell me about the life of a tattoo artist Life is good. It is like my personal life, I do a lot of things for my own sake, but that is how I am. You will also find many tattoo artists who do nothing for themselves and do not care about anything. They drink all day, although it does not have to be like that. It depends on the type of person you are and where you are being, do you follow me? I am not a fat biker and you know that, but if I am exhausted and somewhat troubled, I will stay up late tattooing, sometimes until 3 in the morning. I tattoo here and at home, that is what the life of a tattoo artist is like. Do you like what you do? Yes, you can imagine. I do not have to get up and put on a crappy suit, although it would be fine if I had to wear one. I like to dress as someone I am not to annoy people. That is why I am in advertising, just in case all this fails; in case my arms come off somehow and I cannot carry on with my art. So it is only in case I cannot support myself, but now I live well on my own and I am not even the best tattoo artist in the world. So you study advertising then... I dropped out of school for a while, a year ago, and I am disheartened to go back. Meanwhile, they do not motivate me much. Where do you wish to take your art? I hope to get to a point where there is a group of people who already like and want my art.
Journey into the seed: ALFALFA speaks When did you enter the world of drawing? I grew up with it. My mother is an artist; she studied Fine Arts during the era of the dictatorship. I always liked it; I was always very hooked on drawing. It was more important than playing, than doing anything else. I spent my time drawing without intending to do so; I would sit down and work 5 or 6 hours a day. What does drawing mean to you? First of all, I need it. I would say it is fundamental, a need, it is like being pregnant and not giving birth and continuously having the feeling of having things inside that need to get out, that need to see the light. And since I see so many things all the time, if I do not draw much they remain in my memory. I draw constantly, letting go everything that is in my head. It is the need to be able to clear my head for new things to come. Why do you choose the streets? I have been painting on the streets for two years; before that I made posters. The streets imply covering an unconventional audience in the art world. I love reaching people and reaching those people, for instance, who do not go to galleries or museums, people who get out of their houses to buy bread and run into something amazing. Do you think of leaving a message when you draw? What I do is clearly loaded with messages, truly loaded with messages; it is hyper-nurtured, hyper-complex. The message is self-referential; I am fully committed to what I do. When you see one of my creations, you see me on the inside. To talk about a message in what I do would be like a speech, because without thinking of saying anything it is saying so much about me and what I think and do. It is strange, maybe it is not that I want to say anything in particular, but my everyday life interests are reflected on my work. What are those interests? There are several. I am very attracted to oriental religions, Hinduism and I am also hooked on reading mythology. I am into all the mythologies. The archetypal handling is amazing, how they
put a god with a certain value of nature in a symbol or image and they play with a moral issue. Now I am doing a lot of research on a microscopic world and I am with family trees and relations between languages. I am very hooked on languages. By researching and reading things I am very interested in, I see how they break down and depurate into a world of images. The internal process of creation and of making an image is so complex that I digressed from the question... Why did you choose “Alfalfa” as your pseudonym? Alfalfa began with an alignment of alpha and omega, more like a cyclical issue. Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, which for Christians represents the beginning and the end, like the circle of life. Alfalfa is like an alpha, alpha, beginning, beginning; it is an eternal beginning. Because I feel that somehow that is what my inspiration is like, it never stops, there is never a time when I cannot think of something to do. There is always something and if I cannot think of something beforehand, it just comes up, I let it out and it starts to get out, so the inspiration never stops. There is no break; it is like a constant; alfalfa as an inspiration that never ceases. What is the relation with the pyramid and the eye? It is like my signature. The pyramid that looks is like a power to me. It is God in some way. A pyramid with an eye, everything that vibrates, the energy. I believe it is always with me. I think that one is part of the energy, certainly. There is not a time when it is not there. It is not a matter of being, but of being there. How much influence of Nicolás Sánchez is there in Alfalfa? It is not influenced by me exactly. It is a world I access and just look at and illustrate. It is deep inside, but it is independent of me. It has a life of its own; I am a medium between this world existing somewhere and the real world.
How did this world begin? With a search which started a couple of months ago, when I started drawing the most basic forms. The idea was and is to generate, to put together a world, to make as many bugs as possible, as many mushrooms, flowers, petals, totems, roots. All the existing forms, to represent them as far as possible –because they are infinite-, making them get to all the ones I was thinking of and there are many more. So it is a dead end, a one-way ticket. But from there I started categorizing things, shapes, in aerial world, water world, underwater world, and I exhausted ways so much that now I am exhausting the molecular one. I got to that point of the smallest to the smallest. It is an infinite world like ours. Where do you want to take that world? I think that Alfalfa’s most ambitious project would be to create this, which is creating a completely new world, a biological syntax of its own, a sound atmosphere, a visual and complete world in motion. The idea is that you enter a world where there are moving bugs which talk to you or which talk to each other. My ultimate life project would be to have a farm, a place where you enter something like the world of Charlie’s chocolate factory. A world where everything from the grass to mountains and rocks are made of acrylic or some amusement-park-like material. A world saturated with details, which involves you, a different world. To travel in time to 30,000 years later when there are no more humans and there is another biology above, you know? Apart from the Alfalfa world, are you preparing some other project? Now I am preparing an exhibition with Ana Bidart. We were in New York last year; we won a contest, tied the first place, hit it off and said “we have to do something when we get back to Montevideo”. I am also preparing an exhibition at the subway for the beginning of May of next year and I will try to do a mini involving world. I will paint the station black, bugs with black light and projections; they will talk to you when you approach them and change what they say as you get closer. I have planned that with a DJ friend who helps me and is with me in what I do. What do you feel when you live all that? I certainly feel like a very fulfilled person. Art has given me everything.
MIAMI’S LOCAL ARTISTS SUPPORT.
By Joe Falconeri
By Scott Browne
By Jaime Adrover
GAB Studio is an artist-owned gallery and photo studio, which was created by the photographer Bridges Aderhold. When looking for a bigger space, he saw more than just a photo studio in what he found. It was founded in May 2009 and Bridges uses it for his commercial and personal work. He exhibits 20 artists a month during the Wynwood Second Saturdays. GAB Studio supports local artists and young artists who are trying to get their work seen. It has 1,000 visitors a month on average, giving artists exposure to the art world. The studio attracts magazine editors, art curators, art collectors, judges, doctors, lawyers, students, teachers, and many more. GAB Studio is always looking for artists who are interested in putting their work out there. Whether you are an artist looking to exhibit or a collector looking to buy, stop by GAB Studio.
GAB Studio 105 Northwest 23 Street Miami, FL 33127 Phone#305-200-5349 Email: Baderhold@gmail.com
By Greg Pitts
By Alan Stewart
By Richard Andrews
South 5 St.
JUAN BRANAA Simple, tripped & improvised. Interviewing Juan Branaa (DDD3)
How did the idea of Ezquizodelia Records come up and what is the reason for the name of the record label? The idea came up because we were a group of friends with bands who were recording our first albums and we needed to release them. We decided to create the portal and upload the records. We operate the label with Hiriam Miranda (Uoh!) and Pau O’Bianchi (3Pecados, Millonesdecasasconfantasmas). The name is a mixture of the words “esquizofrenia” (schizophrenia) and “psicodélica” (psychedelic). How many bands form the label? 14 different bands and solo artists with published records. There are also other bands which do not have a record yet but which could be considered part of our family. Which instrument do you specialize in, how long have you been playing and what led you to choose this instrument? The bass guitar is my main instrument, although as a producer I like to know and be able to use any instrument. I try to play everything I can. Even if I know very little about an instrument, that helps me understand it and know how to deal with it when I have to record another musician playing it. I started playing 10 years ago. I remember someone telling me that if I played the bass I could play in any band because there was a shortage of bass players. I think I was also told that it was easier than the guitar because it had less strings.
Which bands or artists made an impression on your life in terms of music? MICHAEL JACKSON AIR MILES DAVIS A.F.I MISFITS THE BEATLES MORPHINE BON IVER NAIROBI CAT POWER THE OFFSPRING CHET BAKER OYSTERHEAD CHUCK BERRY ASTOR PIAZZOLLA COCOROSIE PINK FLOYD DAFT PUNK PORTISHEAD DAMIEN RICE PRIMUS DEVENDRA BANHART RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS DICK DALE SADE DJANGO REINHARDT SAM COOKE ELVIS SEBASTIEN TELLIER THE POSTAL SERVICE SEXTETO ELECTRÓNICO MODERNO JAMIROQUAI SPACEMEN 3 JIMI HENDRIX TOOL JOANNA NEWSOM THE VELVET UNDERGROUND JUAN STEWART THE WHITE STRIPES MARCUS MILLER MAZZY STAR If you had to choose a band you would like to play in, either an existing one or one that has dissolved, which one would it be and why? Mmm… Jimi Hendrix with Band of Gypsys, because their songs are simple, tripped and improvised. Which albums would you choose as the top 5 of all time? 1. AIR - Moon Safari 2. THE BEATLES - Abbey Road 3. PINK FLOYD - Dark Side of the Moon 4. OYSTERHEAD - The Grand Pecking Order 5. RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS - Blood Sugar Sex Magik Back to what you do, which album of the ones you are part of would you choose for an evening with friends or a trip? Sagan St., a real trip. Tell us about your three albums. Each one was produced at a different time in my life, both as a person and as a producer. Therefore, these records are very different from one another. Philadelphia St. was my first record. I was still trying out a lot of things and did not really know what I was doing. That is why it sounds raw and the songs sound more different from each other. The reason for its name is that I ate a lot of Philadelphia cheese back then.
South 5th St. is electronic music. Almost the entire record is programmed and not played, showing a very synthetic production. I named it after the street where I lived in Brooklyn, South 5th. Sagan St. is the opposite in terms of production. I pursued a much more organic sound, and although it was done mostly in the computer, there was a lot more “feeling” when producing it. The reason for its name is that I could not stop reading Carl Sagan’s books at that time. Where did you settle down as a musician? Ever since I was a kid there was music at home because my father is a musician. When I was 15 I started playing the bass guitar and it was at the age of 23 that I started thinking of it as a profession and went to New York to study. Now back in Uruguay is where I carry out the activity of recording, producing and playing. Where do you find more inspiration to write music, in Brooklyn or in Uruguay? The city is not important; it is when the moment of inspiration hits me. It can be anywhere, at any time. The situation has to arise. Do you have any projects in mind for the future? To continue to produce music, both my own and that of other artists. 49
Miami, FL Luis PĂŠrez - FS crook Photography: Pep Johnson 51
â€œExcess of information leads men to act naturally when facing atypical thingsâ€?
JAMES COLEMAN Where do you live? MIAMI, FLORIDA. U.S.A. I’ve seen a few people mess this one up, What is your true hometown? ATLANTA, GEORGIA, U.S.A. Hot sauce or ranch? HOT SAUCE. Most underrated skater? MIKE ESPINOSA. Yellow light. Slow down to stop or speed up? SPEED UP. Where is the strangest place your skateboard has brought you? THE ROUGH GHETTO AREAS OF AMERICAN CITIES LIKE ATLANTA, MIAMI & NEW YORK CITY. If you didn’t skate what would you do? I’M GOOD WITH NUMBERS, SO MAYBE AN ACCOUNTANT? OR A FREELANCE ILLUSTRATOR-I LIKE DRAWING. Tip your hat to... JOHN MONTESI AT WESTSIDE SKATESHOP, TJ BRADLEY AT KREW CLOTHING AND SUPRA FOOTWEAR, JEFF LENOCE, MY WOMAN JERICA SANDERS, MIKE ATWOOD, JASON HENRY, MATT CREASY, MATT SWINSKY.
SS BS Nosegrind
NON N A L Y M , U.S.A. JIM MIAMI, FL IN
FS SHUV Nosegrind
BRAIN DOWNEY IN SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFOR
Kickflip FS Tail Slide Photography: Brad Burt
BS 180 Photography: Brad Burt
Keen One - Pole Jam Photography: Joel Meinholz
“DECKS À LA CARTE” by SWEEPERS ART DECKS Sweepers Art Decks originated in 2010 with the purpose of fully supporting skaters as well as skateboarding itself and of promoting art through its unique designs. This enterprising project involves a line of decks called “Decks á la carte”, for which local artists are invited, who contribute originality to each piece. 21 artists took part in the second line and devoted their time, creativity and love, thus achieving unique designs.
By Tucson 74
By Verónica Young
By Moira Vázquez
By Francisco Cunha
By María Calvario
By Rodrigo Quintans
By Camila Fernández 75
By Santiago Velazco
By Santiago Piñeryúa
By Nestor Márquez
By Federico Sáez
By Pablo Silva
By Soledad Rodríguez
Introducing art by
Photography by 78
Avocado, a fruit of innumerable benefits By Daniela Prado
Let us talk about the avocado... but without worrying about its high fat content. If you are one of those people who have been full of complexes their whole lives, trying to avoid fat at all times, I would appreciate if you kept reading. Fear of fat began with the development of industry, which lead us to the massive consumerism we are used to nowadays. With such high demand, major food companies found more convenient to use poor-quality fat in their products. It is generally of animal origin and contains trans fat, cholesterol, and I would not be surprised if it had other unidentified substances. But let us leave it there so that we do not lose our appetite. As I was saying, the consequence of this has been our suppressing fat from our lives, and under this pretext we also eliminate the benefits of unsaturated fats. It is true, however, that trans fat must be avoided, since it goes through an artificial process and makes the bad cholesterol (LDL) level rise. Returning to the avocado, the fat contained in this fruit can even reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes. This type of fat acts in an opposite manner to trans fat. It reduces the levels of LDL and rises those of good cholesterol (HDL). Although monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are great reasons to adopt a diet including avocado (several times a week at least), the list of benefits brought by this fruit is immense. I will limit myself to list a few. First of all, the avocado you should be eating right now has a lot more potassium than bananas. Potassium is vital to maintain the balance of water and other fluids inside the body, and
it is good for cramps, since it helps regulate neuromuscular activity and assists in muscular contractions. Moreover, the avocado contains several antioxidants, including glutathione, which neutralizes unstable molecules that cause brain damage (among other kinds of damage). It also contains lutein, a photochemical which belongs to the carotenoid family and functions as antioxidant, many times related to the maintenance of eye health. And to mention one more (for I can talk about avocados for hours), it contains folic acid, a vitamin B critically important for the first weeks of formation of the fetal neural tube, from which the spinal cord and the brain are formed. Heart diseases are also usually linked to low levels of folic acid in the body, since it disintegrates homocysteine, which otherwise may accumulate in arterial walls and form blood clots. Likewise, avocados are high on fiber, they contain magnesium and vitamins such as E and A, they are good for the hair and skin... anyway. As if it were not enough, this is a quite convenient fruit, since it is available to the public for most of the year. This is possible due to the fact that the avocado does not reach maturity until it is picked from the tree. That is to say, it can be stored in its own tree for quite a long time, until consuming it is necessary, or in most cases, selling it. You should also try cooking with avocado oil. It is a good substitute for other oils, not only because it is rich in unsaturated fats, but also because it is tasteless and can stand very high temperatures, so it can maintain its beneficial composition even when used to fry. It might be more expensive, but it is worth it. In the long run, your heart will thank you.
Sources: - Understanding Nutrition by Allie Whitney & Sharon Rady Rolfes - 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth by Jonny Bowden 81
Inception- A rather unprofessional commentary by Cecilia Rodríguez
There is nothing I enjoy more than life’s ironies and redundancies. That my friend Daisy is a florist; that single women wear heels all the time and when they get a boyfriend they get their flip-flops out of the closet; that wisdom comes suddenly at the end of life; Edith Piaf’s music in a Marion Cotillard movie. Yes, yesterday two friends and I went to see Inception, the absolute Summerblockbuster around here. What has been in everyone’s mouth and has created so much anticipation is true: the movie is excellent from beginning to end, one of the few I would watch at the cinema twice. Compelling as few, it has the spectator permanently astonished and attentive, for it makes use of the fascinating principle of framing a story within a story. It is Paolo and Francesca reading the story of Lancelot and Guinevere in the Divine Comedy, it is seating in front of the TV watching Beavis and Butthead, reading a survey on magazine readership in a magazine. Take this brilliant idea, let it flow exponentially, so that in every step time is multiplied. Mix it with a little Psychoanalysis, unconscious, imaginary productions, free associations and dream logic. Add first-class cast, an excellent camera, a good soundtrack and a pinch of Hollywood action effects (at times brilliant, sometimes unnecessary). Stir a bit and Voilá: Inception. In regard to the cast: I think this movie achieved something truly extraordinary in me. The performance of a so disturbed and in a such complex dilemma Leonardo Di Caprio penetrated so deeply into my unconscious that even though I try (as someone trying to remember a dream does) I cannot recall Titanic’s scene in which Di Caprio stands on the bow and shouts “I’m the King of the World”. Marion Cotillard, Ken Watanabe and TOM HARDY leave nothing to be desired, as usual. Ellen Page, better known as Juno, who forms an impeccable duo with Di Caprio, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt (let me apologize) who I only remembered for his part as a shy and rather dumb fellow in 10 things I hate about
you, are both astounding. I sometimes think that a good movie is that which keeps rolling around in your head for hours and hours after having seen it. There is no doubt that this happens with Inception. When we got out Lena said something very right: I believe that you either explain this movie in a sentence or you do not explain it at all. I took it as a personal challenge, of course. We walked in silence; I assume the three of us were thinking about the end. ‘I got it. Christopher Nolan sat down to write a script about the human mind holding a Matryoshka doll.’ Before we said goodbye Lena said the ultimate truth which I thought about all the way home: ‘That Christopher Nolan is very superior to me.’ She is so right, and for many reasons I have to stand up and applaud and say: ‘Thank you, thank you very much, Christopher Nolan”. This is the first time since I saw Matrix when I was ten that I did not dare go to the toilet during the movie, no matter what. It was one of the few times I did not have to look at my watch in a movie which lasted more than two hours. Above all, when I left the room, it gave me the impression that several people had understood the plot as much as I understood Matrix at the age of ten. That is what I can highlight apart from the brilliant and entertaining film: Thank you Nolan for demanding from the audience. It is no mystery that Hollywood movies do not hesitate to give in when it comes to demanding the audience’s participation. Nolan proves that it is not only possible, but that visual effects can also be used in a way that they are a means to show something and not the purpose itself. He silenced the biased such as me, who always doubt such high-budget films. However, what is most remarkable is that he proved that it is still possible to make good movies in Hollywood, that filming a good movie is compatible with box-office success. Furthermore, many philosophical issues derive from the plot, which enrich the spectator, finishing with an ending open to imagination, which once more demands the audience’s participation. Once again, although it is not perfect, hats off to it. 83
The divine samurai by Nicolás García As a film student, I am able to fondly appreciate what hard work can do. As a student I am given the opportunity to learn skills and abilities which will provide for my future and that of my family. So, as an avid cinephile, when I first saw one of Akira Kurosawa’s films, I found out what genius lied behind that camera. First, I would like to say that this man changed the way cinema was looked upon over there in Japan. His style was graceful; his technique was detailed and precise. In fact, it was revolutionary. Akira Kurosawa was born in Tokyo in 1910, to a rather large family. He was the last of seven children and third generation Tokyoite with ancestors in the samurai strain. His father was a very serious man with background in the military, while his mother was a very gentle and caring woman. By the time he reached high school, Kurosawa had enrolled in the Japan Proletariat Artists’ Group with a friend. They felt compelled to join due to a strong feeling of resistance for the current state of the nation and that allowed Kurosawa to learn about the new movements in art and literature. There he was able to discuss his admiration for 19th century Russian literature. He was greatly influenced by Dostoevsky in his work; most of his stories share similarities to those of Dostoevsky. By 1936, Kurosawa was working in P.C.L. Studios when he met Kajiro Yamamoto. Shortly after Yamamoto had become Kurosawa’s teacher. Yamamoto taught Kurosawa the entire line of filmmaking. From the various stages of production to editing, Yamamoto allowed for Kurosowa and fellow production staff members to put into practice the theories he had taught them. From there Kurosawa earned valuable experience that would identify his unique style, his unorthodox techniques, and his storytelling artistry. 84
His technique, like I said, was very detailed and precise. Akira was a man who knew what he wanted and would not be satisfied with anything less. Yet, that same technique would differ according to what he was shooting. For example, when shooting The Throne of Blood, a heavy action-packed samurai western, the realistic feel of which has been studied by film majors all over the Hollywood nation, he would focus his photographic understanding on capturing the actuality of what was being shot. In the conclusion of the film, he placed real archers out of camera range and instructed them to shoot the real arrows point blank. He would then rehearse the scene with one of his favorite actors, Toshiro Mifune, and with chalk he would mark the floor for Mifune to follow. For Kurosawa there was a method to his madness. The arrows that were designed to miss Mifune by small margins actually missed the actor by inches. After everything is rehearsed and it lives up to the realistic touch of Kurosawa, he then decides how it will be photographed. His style was like none other. It reflected the power of the human mind and its effects on others. When he wrote his scripts his characters professed a psychological obstacle that would often be hidden to them, and would ultimately lead to their defeat. It is what critics have called “the mirror theory”. Akira Kurosawa was an amazing artist. He developed new ways to show meaning into the frame. His knowledge of a camera led his films to be aesthetically complete. His storytelling dexterity has been reveled through the years; so much so, that his films have been a cornerstone for the fundamental understanding in Psychology schools. He is a samurai in his own way; one with an unforeseen genius. A Divine genius.
achieving the success the brand Caro Criado has today.
Design Pioneer By Natalia Romay
Carolina Criadoâ€™s designs can be found in an atelier in Pocitos. When we got there, there were several customers, some looking through the clothes, others trying them on. From that moment it is already possible to perceive the way Caro is, the service she provides each customer, how she recommends the best and does not stop until she has found the exact garment with the adequate shoes: the perfect outfit for the occasion and the right person. Carolina Criado is 24 years old and is one of the most successful young designers in Uruguay. She began her studies at the Peter Hammers design school, where she felt very comfortable from the start. Today she stays in touch with both the professors and Peter Hammers himself. Then she settled in Buenos Aires to continue with her Confection studies, where she also had the opportunity to attend seminars on prints, handbags and fashion figurine. We are witnessing the boom of design in our country and Caro is one of the protagonists. She tells us that there are a large number of designers, but that this job is not easy. It requires studying a lot and, at the same time that trends are followed, one must be unique so as to stand out from the rest. The Uruguayan market is very small, which is why sometimes there are similarities among clothes. By excelling she manages to be unique, thus
She has come a long way to ensure her brand had the prestige and quality it has today. She started by making accessories, as most designers do. Afterwards, while she was working at a clothing shop, she met who would then become her future partner in the ABSURDA venture. They did well, but later Carolina Criado split to start her own clothing brand. She cannot say how she got to be so well known; it is a group of things which leads to success. Caro attended every design fair, where her brand began acquiring renown, always trying to personalize each sale. When clothes are liked, they have good quality and the designer is concerned with completing details, a relationship with the customer only a few people can achieve is built, which is fundamental to succeed in the fashion world. Nowadays Caro can afford things she could not at the beginning, and everything is focused mostly on the quality of her clothes, better confection and better fabrics. Her dream is to be able to make a living out of design and to set up several clothing shops with her brand. She wants to begin by settling in Carrasco, since she believes that 60% of her customers are from there, but without neglecting the atelier, where she began and where so many customers go to see her designs, apart from being more downtown. Last year Caro was lucky to make a trip to different parts of the world, in which she learnt a lot, living fashion in each country and getting to know various trends and cultures. This trip was a key point in her career, for it opened her mind to the entire world and especially to the world of fashion, helping her create the exclusive clothes made today by Caro Criado.
TOBACCO ROAD - A home, a bar.
by Valentina Simon Article also found at: www.blastmia.com 626 South Miami Avenue Miami, FL 33130-3016 MIAMI — Sixteen years ago, a well-known Florida artist, Antonia Gerstacker, painted the black and red sign on a unique light-blue background that hangs outside Tobacco Road, the oldest bar in Miami. This grizzled bar first opened in 1912, the same year the Titanic sank and New Mexico and Arizona were admitted as states to the Union. Tobacco Road offers much to its many patrons: remarkable meals, a distinctive environment, almost a century of history and, most important: nothing less than a good time. Prohibition The Congress of the United States passed the 18th amendment into law on January 16, 1920, a well-intentioned but ultimately illadvised law that forbade the buying, selling and consuming of alcoholic beverages in this country. The wise owners of Tobacco Road refused to let the law affect their business, and responded by redesigning the bar especially for this unfortunate period, one that lasted thirteen years before it was repealed. This unique joint has several concealed doors and ladders that would redirect workers to the hidden alcohol they would stock for their customers. Rumor has it that on the second floor of the building there was the best cabaret in town. Amazingly, the public thought that this alcohol supplier was a bakery. Food and drink The food is incredibly cheap and appetizing, varying according to what day of the week it is: on Tuesdays there is the Maine Lobster special, on Wednesdays customers fill up with ‘all you can eat’ BBQ-Ribs, and on Thursdays the week ends with a 16 oz. T-bone steak that is to die for. All of these specials come with a minimum of two drinks ensuring that the evening spent there is even more pleasant. The bar also offers a big selection of beer, liquor and wine with fairly decent prices and generous servings. A very special characteristic about the bar is that every Friday they have 9888
cent beer and liquor for an hour celebrating Tobacco Road’s 98th anniversary. Location and style Tobacco Road is located in between Brickell Avenue and downtown, a convenient location that brings an extended variety of characters to the bar at all times of the day. During lunch or in the early afternoon a varied assortment of individuals can be found there, from senior executive ‘suits’ to the up-and-coming junior executive urban achievers who, during brief breaks from their downtown jobs, choose to go to the local bar to enjoy a nice meal along with a refreshing and relaxing drink. When the night starts to kick in, so does the bohemian mix of people who live nearby and want to go to a familiar and friendly bar before starting the night. These types of people can also be found at closing hours for the last call. In between lunch and cocktail hour, long time patrons, individuals who have been going to the bar for as long as they can remember, once again wander in, seeking the comfort of the stool and the bar. Tobacco Road is definitely a neighborhood bar, a spot to have a drink with friends or be alone, to drown sorrows or celebrate a good deed. The bartender, Johnny, always welcomes regular customers and new ones equally, providing excellent service and a terrific sense of humor. Each individual at the bar has his or her own story; some even call the unusual bar ‘home’. For six days a week, there are live bands playing in the back, an outdoor terrace where a homeless man called John hangs out every single night just to enjoy the good music. John dreams of becoming a singer one day, and the good fellows at Tobacco Road encourage him at every show, allowing him to freely sing to whoever wants to hear. This irreplaceable detail gives the bar a gracious personality which inspires these inimitable characters to return and, as many have in the past, create a home out of these simple memories. The Rock and Roll and Blues vibe of the place is legendary, an atmosphere that gels and molds with the characters that can be found in between those wooden walls, metal ladders, signed posters, and alcohol ads. If those walls could talk, the most interesting anecdotes in Miami would surely come out of that hole in the wall called Tobacco Road.
MAMA ROUX -That Good Old Bar By Natalia Romay
to the advertising of the bar. Currently most businesses communicate to a large degree through Facebook. They see it as a means to transmit specific and basic information. They do not believe in exhausting the tool, making it lose its functionality. They do not agree with harassing people with information. Most of their customers are friends, acquaintances or simply people who got to know the bar by word of mouth. They stand out for offering quality in terms of dishes, drinks, desserts and service, and a warm atmosphere. They want to give nights at Mamma Roux a cultural imprint. The bar started having live music a couple of Sundays ago, with great success. They would also like to implement fashion, photography and other segments.
Manuel Haedo 3101 Montevideo, Uruguay In the heart of Parque Battle is Mamma Roux, the most frequented bar since March. Mamma Roux is ran by a group of three young men, who got together with the idea of having a bar of their own and who nowadays share a great friendship. To them this was the dream of a lifetime, something they always wanted. Such is the case of Fernando, one of the owners, who has worked in the nightlife business since his adolescence and sees himself doing this for the rest of his life. Even the location of Mamma Roux is relaxing: at a prominent corner where the streets are quiet. When entering, a lot of eye-catching and strange things can be found, perhaps rather unconventional for a bar. Many antique artifacts and objects of their own creation, such as the bar lights, which consist in bottles cut by them, or the living room, a unique place one does not want to leave. They told us that once they found the place they did not stop working and got involved in the design of the bar, as well as in the painting, building and so on. Everything they were capable of doing, they did. They attended auctions constantly. Many times they even spent the night at the bar so as to be able to get up early the next day and go to auctions to obtain the best artifacts. They have a clearly defined policy with regard 90
Running the bar is a very sacrificed job, since it requires their being always present. Although sometimes there is quite a bit of stress and tension, â€œto see people sharing a drink at your bar is very gratifyingâ€?, even more when it was made by oneself, as in the case of Mamma Roux. Given the great deal contributed by each of them, the feeling of belonging is even greater. Federico told us how strange he felt on the opening day. He had mixed feelings; on the one hand, he was pleased, but on the other hand, he felt as if something of his own was being invaded. Nevertheless, they are definitely happy and surprised at the great success they are having. And, why Mamma Roux? Clearly this question could not be left out. They chose the name a few weeks before opening and it was thanks to Karim, the owner who is most fond of music, who ran into the song Mamma Roux by Dr. John. When listening to it one day at the bar, they all thought that it was the right name. Today Mamma Roux is that warm bar to get together with friends which was so missed by all.
Photography: Soledad GarcĂa Saravia
“I have always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library” Jorge Luís Borges
The magic of being moved By Analía Matyszczyk
In the neighborhood of Punta Carretas, on Montero Street, one of the most cutting-edge profiles of Montevidean culture is found: a live bookshop. “One gets an experience apart from buying a book”, “Something unique and incomparable”, “The idea is that people live what books say: to search, to feel, to find oneself, to continue”, its founders say. Having opened on June 5th, La Licorne makes an innovative commitment: to be able to move their readers through art, to stimulate their critical view and to surprise them. Walking down Montero Street is not the same today as it was three months ago. Now there is a house which not only calls your attention, but which also invites you to visit it. A twostory house, with its facade painted orange, stained glass windows, a rocking chair on the sidewalk surrounded by boxes full of books and a 5-feet floor lamp; all that welcomes you to La Licorne. Two boards painted blue and yellow render it explicit “Open: free coffee and scones today”. When one sees it, the series of feelings, between warmth and comfort, is progressive. Involuntarily customers are surprised. Even more, they allow to be taken by surprise and then seek to become involved. You go in. The first wall you see invites you to scribble on it. Yes, to draw or write on it whatever comes to your mind. It is scribbled all over; it is black but it seems white because of the chalk drawings, but you will certainly find a spot. You have scribbled, you are already part, but you are still to know. Now a living room set. Red sofas with a medieval look invite you 92
to sit down to read something yours, which you carry with you, or something you have chosen from the bookshop. Then it is very likely that a young man, probably British, offers you coffee, while he recites his poems and discusses them with the rest of the people involved. In the meantime, another guy plays the guitar on the opposite couch. Here the constructors are three. What is funny is that each one represents a different generation: Juan Grunwaldt, a 22-year old poet who lives at the bookshop, Daniel Supervielle, writer and journalist who is in charge of public relations, and Jorge González Bouzas, a retired literature professor, who is responsible for advising customers and serving the shop together with Juan. Today, almost three months after the opening, the poet confesses that “this is a dream” come true. The professor says he is “very satisfied” and the journalist thinks the balance is “excellent and cannot be better”. Since June 5th, opening date of the shop, activities have been organized which distinguish La Licorne and give it its characteristic touch. There were gigs of bands, clarinetists, girl singers and not only on the opening day: “Every time friends show up and feel like playing, we put something together on the spot and really good things come up”, said Juan. There are also instances of poetry reading, where authors are analyzed and recited out loud and everyone contributes their opinions. “Another fun thing was the ‘happening’: we put a cloth on the top part of the house and people painted what they
wanted. Lots of color, music, it was great”. A wooden staircase allows us to climb to the second level. This floor is dedicated to the interaction with other arts. The aim is
for people to get involved: “That painters or photographers come to tell us ‘I want to exhibit here’, so that we tell them ‘yes, of course, bring, sell, exhibit and live from what you like, because this is really worth it’”.
A haven for travelers Inspired by the concept of ‘tumbleweeds’ from the French bookshop Shakespeare & Company, which consists in accommodating travelers connected to literature in exchange for a few hours of work in the bookshop and having an active writing, La Licorne is the first bookshop in Uruguay to apply this to its shop. John Dewitt and Tomas Weber are two foreign writers who are currently staying at the bookshop. To John the goal has already been achieved: “La Licorne has already managed to attract people”. He thinks that at that place there is “something which does not happen everywhere”. According to him, “it is friendly” even seen from outside. “When you go in and see people reading, reciting poems, writing on a sofa, offering you coffee... it makes you feel part of it, and that is unique”. The two guests have known several bookshops and cities around the world. But the funny thing is that when it comes to highlighting something La Licorne has which is different, they both agree on one item: “the community of friends” they find here, together with the warm environment, make it a “unique place”. “It is a perfect environment”, they concluded. In the neighborhood of Punta Carretas, on Montero Street, a story is found. A great story. Some call it “live bookshop”, others “coincidence”, others “fate”. To many young Uruguayans, a dream was built on that street: a poetry which discovers, and which discovers them every day”. “Writing is nothing more than a guided dream” Jorge Luis Borges.
Clarinet Music Night Gervasio Tarragona, 22-year old clarinettist who organized the International Clarinet Meeting, comes to La Licorne to play free jazz with Jean François Bescond, renowned French clarinettist. He has come for anyone who will listen. When they start playing, members of the audience start reading out loud some poetry they like and which seems appropriate for the occasion. Tomas Weber reading Mallarmé in French, or Jorge Bouza reading Borges can be heard. At a certain moment Jean François puts the clarinet aside to start reading Rimbaud. Music and poetry, musicians and audience are engaged in conversation. By the end of the night, half the tipsy audience exchanges telephone numbers and a community is formed.
Nostalgic Reading We take advantage of this somewhat strange and corny holiday to do something interesting (and not without irony): Nostalgic Readings. At the scheduled time, there are less than ten people in the bookshop. After half an hour, not knowing whether it is more embarrassing to call it off or to go through with it with only eight people, we decide to do it. An introduction to the event is given and the readings begin. Every so often more and more people come in, and the shy atmosphere melts into a cozy one. Stories by Borges and original poetry by Juan Grunwaldt are read. People who do not know each other discuss the role of technology in life today, which creates the perfect moment to read paragraphs of essays from the 80s on technology and society, the seriousness of which sounds very funny. After the reading, they put the books aside and get the guitar and Peruvian cajones. Wine amplifies the energy of the environment, and improvisation begins...
TN: The Noche de la Nostalgia (Nostalgia Night) is celebrated in Uruguay every August 24, the night before Independence Day. Many parties are organized and music from past decades is played. John Dewitt
Photography: Agustín Piña
We treyr. hard
Wide fleet of vehicles in Uruguay For reservations :
In Uruguay we are in: Montevideo, Aeropuerto de Carrasco, Punta del Este, Aeropuerto Laguna del Sauce, PaysandĂş, Fray Bentos, Colonia, Mercedes and present in more than 165 countries.