Saturday, November 28, 2009

The magic glow of neon

Mission Street at 2nd. I hope they sell enough Steinways to keep that neon sign glowing ad infinitum.

Kearny Street, San Francisco

Kearny at Commercial: If I had a newspaper, I'd want to have its offices in a building like this. Lucky are those who work at the Sing Tao daily...and the waxing studio on the top floor.

Kearny Street, San Francisco

There's still a lot to enjoy in the façade of this building on Kearny Street between Washington and Clay, despite the attempt by whoever owns it to ruin it with cheap signage and tacky awnings at street level. It's obviously a pretty squalid tenement inside, but the exterior remains lovely. Wonder how long it will last...

Brazil in SF

Although I wasn't totally blown away by the latest exhibit at Yerba Buena, "When Lives Become Form: Contemporary Brazilian Art, 1960s to the Present," I did see a few things that made me smile. From top, Beatriz Milhazes' window treatment, osgemeos' "Untitled," and Rogerio Degaki's "Vicky," oil on canvas that looks like it's been knit instead of painted.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Who's hungry?

Fish salad? I think I'll pass...

Budapest: Street views

Budapest: Bridges

At top, the Chain Bridge, built 1839-49, first to span the Danube from Buda to Pest. At bottom, the Liberty Bridge, 1894-99. Both are reconstructions, the originals having been destroyed by the Nazis as they departed Budapest in 1945.

The fabulous buildings of Budapest, part II

Exemplary, but not at all unusual in a city of rich architectural detail.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The fabulous buildings of Budapest

From the late 19th Century, another masterpiece of style and proportion.

Budapest: Art Noveau

More Art Noveau in Budapest.

Budapest: Art Noveau

A fabulous Art Noveau building in Budapest; note the incredible tiles.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Budapest: The Turkish influence

The Ottoman influence can also be seen at the mausoleum of Gul Baba, who brought the cultivation of roses to Budapest.

Budapest: The Turkish influence

Few traces remain of the Ottoman era in Budapest (1526-1686), but the Turkish influence makes itself known in baths like the Kiraly, whose exterior is shown here. Built from 1566 to 1570, the baths were revised and added onto over the years, but much of the building is still original.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Budapest: Architectural ornament

Two distinct styles of ornament in Budapest.

Budapest: A pair of entryways

Budapest: A magnificent coffee house

Recently restored and reopened, the Alexandra Bookstore on Andrassy Ut in Budapest features one of the most magnificent cafes in the world, its interior decorated with gorgeous frescoes depicting the various arts. The building is an Art Noveau masterpiece with Egyptian influences which in its first incarnation was the Paris department store.
Needless to say, the place was packed...who wouldn't want to enjoy an afternoon espresso in such a wonderful environment?