In 2017 I went to ten different countries, and was rarely in one place for longer than a week between January and September, which is both exciting and unsettling. Here’s where I went and what I did, using my Instagram photos (because I don’t have camera photos of everything, and even when I do, I haven’t edited all of them). Obviously loads and loads of images under the cut. If you’re wondering how I went to so many countries, I work for an agency that sends me to teach school workshops abroad, my mum lives in France, and I won the plane tickets to Japan.
This summer I had to chance to go to both Documenta in Kassel and the Ljubljana Biennial of Graphic Arts. Here’s my photos from one of the Ljubljana Biennial exhibitions that allowed photos. The theme of this Biennial was this poem by Slovenian writer Jure Deleta (and inspiration from Karel Destovnik). There was no overall curator of the festival this time, previous winners of prizes were allowed to each choose an artist to take part. Ljubljana is a small, easy-going city, and so was the art festival, although the artwork and exhibition presentation were high quality. None of the stress of Documenta. I have written a zine about my trips to Slovenia and Croatia this summer, available here, and am in the process of writing one about my time in Germany.
When I was in Ljubljana this summer, I went on a boat tour up the Ljubljanica (pronounced lyu-blyan-itsa) river that runs through the city. (You can see my other photos of Metelkova in Ljubljana here).
Slovenia is a very underrated country I think. Although it’s very small (only 2 mi. people), it combines the charms of both Austria and Croatia. Ljubljana is also a beautiful city, which seems to have a lot going on for such a small capital (around 300,000 people). I was only there for a day and a half on my way to Klagenfurt over the border in Austria for work, but I plan to come back.
I have just finished a split zine about my trips to Croatia and Slovenia this summer- you can find it here.
I’ve got two new zines out. Both are £2/$2.80/€2.30. UK postage is free. Available here.
Ynfytyn 30- Oxbridge or bust?
About failing to study at Oxbridge, and then the miserable experience of working there. How do you continue a system of closed doors and in-group privilege (and keep the riff-raff like you and me out) in a tertiary education system where all universities are public and charge the same tuition?
Strange social structures
Terrible posh people
Racism and classism a-plenty
“Oxford is the city of closed doors”
My friend H’s depressing years at Cambridge
Ynfytyn 31- Croatia/Slovenia split issue
A split zine about a last-minute to holiday to Croatia this summer, and then a work trip to Slovenia two weeks later.
The beautiful Dalmatian coast
Game of Thrones location mania
The joy of the humble burek
They really do love Iron Maiden in the former Yugoslavia
Slovenia, the land of Žizek, potica cake (and sadly Melania Trump)
Slovenia is very underrated
Metelkova autonomous district in Ljubljana
Ljubljana Biennial arts festival
Lake Bled and Austria by train
Metelkova is an area in the centre of Ljubljana that was originally a military barracks, then was squatted in the early 90s when the Yugoslav army pulled out after Slovenia declared independence, and is now full of social centres, workshops and gig venues. (And a hostel where I stayed overnight before crossing the border to Klagenfurt for work).
The most famous area like this is Christiania in Copenhagen. I was very disappointed with Christiania when I visited last year. I liked some of the buildings there, but the central market area was sleazy and tacky and there was an aggressive atmosphere, and the place it most honestly reminded me of was the red light district in Amsterdam. Maybe its glory days were in the 60s and 70s when it was founded.
Metelkova is a different proposition. It had a friendly and relaxed attitude, and I never felt any qualms about wandering round by myself, an atmosphere probably helped by the fact that the city government takes a generally positive attitude to its existence. They still don’t pay any rent, but no-one seems to care. It was clean and pleasant- people seemed to respect the communal space.