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08(01), 07(03), 06(03), 05(02), 04(02), 03(02)
12(02), 11(01), 10(08), 09(03), 07(17), 06(01), 05(04), 04(03), 03(02), 02(02), 01(06)
12(05), 11(02), 10(01), 09(01), 08(02), 07(04), 06(01), 05(02), 04(03), 03(02), 02(02), 01(01)
12(01), 11(02), 09(09), 08(16), 07(02), 06(03), 05(04), 04(03), 02(03), 01(02)
12(03), 11(01), 10(02), 09(01), 08(23), 07(03), 06(02), 05(01), 04(02), 03(02)
12(03), 11(02), 10(01), 09(01), 08(23), 05(02)
09(04), 08(01), 06(01), 05(02), 04(02), 03(01), 02(01)
11(01), 10(02), 09(15), 08(01), 07(02), 06(04), 04(12), 01(06)
12(05), 11(01), 10(06), 09(12), 08(02), 07(02), 06(01), 05(01), 04(10), 02(01), 01(05)
12(02), 08(01), 07(15), 06(02), 05(03), 02(02), 01(03)
12(05), 11(01), 07(24), 06(06), 05(03), 04(02), 01(01)
12(01), 11(01), 10(07), 09(01), 08(04), 07(05), 06(04), 05(06), 04(01), 03(04), 02(06), 01(04)
12(04), 11(02), 10(03), 09(04), 08(03), 07(04), 04(01)
07(01), 05(01)
08(01)
10(01)

Wed, 30 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 08 (0 comments)
my trip for day 08 brought me from "central" to "sheun wan", starting at the "statue square"[02-03]. there they have huge drums (like the one they have in every temple) put up as part of the 60th anniversary of the people's republic of china, which will be celebrated on the 1st of october. then i was heading down to the harbour[06-09] where several ferry peers are located. right next is the "International Finance Center Two"[10-14] ("IFC II"), which is the second highest building in hong kong. since it was again raining all day long i tried to get through malls from sight to sight. thus i ended up in malls for staying dry rather than for cooling down as in the last few days. on an entry to a subway i found this little cat[17] that was resting on this chair while loads of people were walking by. cute kitty. i finally reached my next stop, namely the "bank of china"[23] building, which has an observatory on the 47th floor. but it was closed today. too bad, i really wanted to get an overview in a building that close to the harbour.
next thing i actually found by accident was "st. paul's cathedral"[29-31] where a piano convert was just about to end when i entered the church. again, too bad. a few hundred metres away i spotted another church[32], but i don't know the name since it was not listed in the guide book. since hong kong is built on hills and islands, i had another steep way to the "HK zoological and botanical garden" ("hkzbg"). in the zoo they have lemurs, apes, turtles, two crocodiles[47] and one snake. additionally loads of plants spread all over the park. also they had a stuffed tiger[43], that was a donation from a zoo in germany, and bred two offspring. sadly the kitty died last year. since all the animals were in cages i did not take pictures of them but rather took a picture of some wooden animals[48-49] that are also spread all over the park. also they had nice benches with all kind of animals like cats[41-42] or apes[55-57]. lovely zoo in the huge city of hong kong.
next stop was an old stone stair[62] and the four last gas lanterns[63] in hongkong. then the weather got really very very bad, and i was hasting to "man mo" temple. next stop was "lok ku road", via the "hollywood road"[64-70]. usually at "lok ku road" there should be the "cat street market" (meow!), but due to the really heavy rain no market stalls were opened. additionally i was soaked to the bone and decided that this is not fun anymore and was fighting my way to the next MTR station. when i arrived the station i really felt like i had just taken a bath with my clothes on. good thing about the rain: it's a little cooling down. the intensity of the rain showers is called "amber" - in formation sheets were put up in the hotel elevators. looks like the weather wont change soon...

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Tue, 29 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 07 (0 comments)
went to McDonald's to have my breakfast on day day 07. inside the restaurant sat an very old woman who soon started to talk to me (in perfect british english, though she was asian). we were talking a while, then she started palm-reading of my hand (of course not for free, but less than a "professional" one would charge). actually what she told me was all kind of stuff she could have guessed by just observing me and talking to me for a few minutes (which she actually did). but a little pushing for the ego is never a bad idea. so i enjoyed listening to all the stuff like i'm intelligent, wise (she might be assuming this by our previous conversation we had), i'm artistically gifted (though i wonder how she found out this one. maybe because of my huge camera bag?), and i will marry at an old age (well i am travelling alone and i'm not 20 anymore), i have a well going career in my job (yes, at least i can afford a stay in hong kong for a longer time), and i'm rather observing and introverted than extroverted (well, yop, she was talking most of the time), i'm friendly and open minded (yop, again, that's why i want to visit "exotic" countries and have dread locks). and so on... but all in all this was a very nice chat with the old lady, who unfortunately refused my plea to take a picture of her. when i left McDonald's it had surprisingly stopped raining. so i changed my plans, and instead of walking through malls or museums, i went to see the "po fuk shan" cemetery and the "man fat sze" temple (aka "the temple of ten thousand buddhas"). to get there i took the MTR and got of at "sha tin". right above the station is a huge mall[013-018]. outside the mall there's a small "snoopy's world"[001-012] park for kids. due to the rain it was actually empty and most of the fair-things were closed anyway. cute to see all the peanuts in 3D and this size.
then i headed on to the "po fuk shan" cemetery[019-063]. the cemetery is huge and has several levels[056,060] that spread all over the hill. at the main hall there was some ceremony[045] going on, but i have no idea what it was for. then i found the usual stuff like golden statues[046,051-052,058-059,061-062] in temples or outside. all those buildings (that could be closed like garages or shops) contained loads of marble plates[055], and there were thousand of them. each of them for one or more relatives.
going back downhill all the cemetery to the main entrance again to get to the next sight, namely "the temple of the ten thousand buddhas", or "man fat sze"[067-175]. although a steep climb up to the monastery it was totally worth it. what you get is really several thousand buddhas. be it life-sized ones on the trail up/down to/from the monastery[067-092,134-142,173], or miniatures [121-131] inside the main temple. this was my first real WTF? experience in hong kong. the temple is really awesome. three walls all filled up with tiny buddha-statues. then there's a smaller glass case[130] again with several hundred buddhas inside. and then there are those three cones[129] with small buddhas inside too. so adding up all those buddhas that might really make it to ten thousand. totally impressive and fascinating. please note that all the life sized buddhas were unique. also most of the ones placed in the walls and in the cone were unique. i wish someone would have made such a temple with cats. wooooo, ten thousand cats - i would die in aweness instantly.
the trail is not finished yet at the main temple. instead again a steep walk up to another temple (or whatever it is/was) again with life sized and coloured statues to each side of the path [135-142].
at the end i found some abandoned buildings[145-153] again (yuhu!) and it seems i found the place where they repair the broken statues. at least some of the ones standing up there were (partially) damaged or disassembled. i'm still not sure if this was really meant for the public or if i took a wrong turn somewhere. the place was a mess, but i totally liked it. but, you might have guessed it, this was still not the end of the path. again up the hill i ended at a statue garden[161] and a huge white statue[162-163] with a lovely dragon[164] in front of a waterfall. totally impressive and nice. but this time, this was really the highest point one could go.
since i left the main temple i was totally alone (and on the way up to the courtyard i saw only about five people all in all). i explored the abandoned houses again on my way down, when i noticed it was only 15 minutes left until the temple closes. i saw gates along the way up. so i hurried to not end up locked in this place. but... ahm... too late. all gates were already closed. the only being here besides me was a barking dog. but it ran some other way (actually i was quite glad about that). so i was locked in, totally alone, and it got darker every minute. great. since i've seen a way i have not walked yet when i was wandering the courtyard i decided to exit there so that at least i would not miss something important just because i was locked in. it turned out to be a good choice because the barbwire at exactly this exit was pretty lose, so i could partially remove it, and then hop over the fence to land safely about two metres lower. puh, lucky me. down the way were another few hundred buddhas[173]. once more totally nice. oh, and i saw another cat [176].
i wanted to go home since i really was tired now from all the climbing. but the day was not over yet. i got on a MTR train and thought "oh, this train cabin looks so different. so few people and... hm... what does this sign say? first class'? aha, interesting.". so i thought i'm wrong here, and wanted to get off again when suddenly three MTR-employees were going to each passenger asking them to put their octopus-card on some card reader. so did i. then the guy told me i did not pay for first class. ahm... yop, i never intended to go on first class. well, we got off the next station and he explained to me that i have to enable my octopus card for a first class ride before i get on the train. fines may be up to 500HKD (~50EUR) if you don't do so. damn. then he asked for an ID. but i had none, since my wallet got wet the day before so i left it at home so it could get dry. also this was illegal. fines here could rise even higher he told me. well... guess i looked so totally exhausted and tired that this really nice and kind MTR guy said i get a warning and do not have to pay. guess my apologies and surprised looks were convincing him that i really did not know better. so he showed me where to charge my card so i could go on first class. pretty expensive actually, but i was very willing to pay only the extra charge instead of the fines. as a sign of good will on my side (though no one noticed that since the MTR guys already left the station for some other trains) i travelled the rest of my way home in second class trains (though it was charged for first one for this trip). quite exciting day... if only the fortune teller lady would have told me that in the morning...

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Mon, 28 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 06 (0 comments)
well, who would have guessed... yesterday i bought sun cream for my face, since i had a sunburn, and today there's a typhoon warning T1. this means no sun, a lot of rain, high humidity, and, and that's the good side of it, falling temperatures. so today it had about 26 degrees celsius, which is - compared to the average 30 to 35 degrees so far - very acceptable to me. but... no need for sun cream anymore. but unaware of the typhoon warning T1 is started my trip to "lan tau" island, thinking the rain would go away soon (as known it from austria). but it turned out i was wrong. so this day was ok for me, but a huge threat to my poor camera. my lenses grew damped, the body was exposed to a lot of water. but it seems it survived this day. bad thing is... it looks like the typhoon will stay for a few days. so maybe tomorrow i will make it easier for my camera and go to a few museums. we'll see... at the MTR station there's the entrance to the cable car system called "ngong ping 360"[002-026,161-170], that takes one right to the "po lin" monastery, the biggest (sitting) bronze buddha statue in the world, and a bone relict of buddha.
when i left the cable car cabin it was raining quite a lot, and an australian told me this will not change for today. so i started my tour to the buddha statue[031-033,045-049,053-054,061-063]. 200 steps[028-031,055-056] lead up to the big statue and the museum[042-044] inside the statue.
inside the museum of course no photography was allowed. and the bone relic would have only been visible through a magnifying glass, but it was locked away in a glass case anyway. so the closest i could get to it, was about four metres. i didn't see the piece of the bone. too sad. next to the statue there's a monastery[067-109] with the monks taking care of the complex. they had vegetarian food[103,107] only offered at the canteen. so i had some sweet-sour, some "pork"-flavoured, and some unknown flavoured tofu pieces. totally delicious and very cheap.
next thing i wanted to go to was "the path of wisdom". but i soon found out i was the only one willing to go this path. so i was walking through a dark and foggy forest, while it was raining heavily down on me. but what i found was worth it. no, not the path of wisdom yet, but an abandoned house[111-132], surrounded by scarecrows[111-113]. pretty spooky scary, but awesome for taking pictures. i just love abandoned buildings.
after exploring the ground floor of the ruin (the stairways to the first floor and basement unfortunately were obstructed) i went on with the seek for my wisdom. "the path of wisdom"[135-142] turns out to be about 38 wood beams, each of them several metres of height. quite impressive in the fog. but again, a little spooky, as i was still all alone. so what does this tell me? i'm all alone in the fog and rain on my path of wisdom? i have no idea.
on my way back[143-146] from enlightenment and wisdom i came by another few abandoned houses[147-158]. again very beautiful, but unfortunately inaccessible. when going back again to the MTR station via the cable car it was really foggy and windy. the cabin[161-170] was shaking and sometimes visibility was limited to about 15 metres. another spooky event, since once more i was alone, this time in the cabin. but... i found a McDonald's near my hotel. so, tomorrow i will have breakfast there. yippieh!

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Sun, 27 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 05 (0 comments)
i think i had a sunstroke yesterday. i really felt miserable today in the morning. so i spent all day resting, sleeping, and drinking gallons of water (as every day). in the evening i felt much better again, so i decided to watch the "symphony of light". it's a light show that is the largest permanent light show in the world and thus is listed in the guinness book of records. 44 buildings on both sides of victoria harbour are included in this multimedia spectacle. additionally there's sound involved which can be heard either via radio or at the area around the "HK cultural centre" (cf. day 02, [047-066]). impressive light show since all lasers and (search)lights are coordinated with the music.
independent of this event, a lot of buildings have animated light fronts. really amazing to watch. i really love the sea-front in victoria harbour. be it day or night. good night.

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Sat, 26 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 04 (0 comments)
today, day 04, i went to "wan chai"/"causeway bay". they nice old trams there[001-002], and the area is not plain. instead all the skyscrapers are built all over the hills, and quite often there's also unused green wood areas. right next to the MTR (the metro) is the "tin hau" temple[008-023]. there were no "no photography" signs, and since there was another tourist in there taking pictures i thought that's a good chance of finally getting pictures of the inside of a temple. this one was quite typical and (for my eyes) looked exactly the same as the other ones i have already visited. the only difference is size.
my guide book said there should be another temple near "tin hau" temple, but actually i didn't find it. too bad. so i went on to "victoria park"[027-035], a big park with loads of green areas, a separate jogging lane, and other stuff like a model boat area[043]. after taking the exit on "gloucester street"[044-051] and walking around some side streets i was searching for the "noon day gun". the gun is located right on the seaside, but between me and the gun there was "gloucester street" and no pedestrian crossing. since my guide said there's a subway somewhere i was searching for the usual subway signs. but this subway was very different. the entrance was totally hidden (i had to ask twice where it is, since i didn't find it, though i was standing only a few metres away when i asked the second time). so first step is to go partially through the underground car park[052], then following long hallways with sea-water pipes[053-054] until you finally reach the other side. quite strange, but i did it. the gun[056] itself was a little disappointing then actually (for all the effort i had to take).
next thing i wanted to see was the "HK convention and exhibition centre" (aka "HKCEC"), the huge building i saw on day 02 ([067]) from the other side of the harbour. on my way there i came by the "chinese resource centre" that has some nice dragon things like a fountain[070-072,078-080] and a wall[081-084] on the ground floor. very impressive and totally nice.
and so finally i arrived at the "HKCEC"[086-107] that somehow reminded me of the opera house in sidney. at the centre there was still the jewellery and gems fair that is now ongoing for days. i often see people running around with access passes and jewellery related catalogues or shopping bags.
to get back to "tsim sha tsui" i took the ferry[108-110]. it took me about eight minutes to get back there. quite fast, quite cheap, and definitely nice. so i went home, took a shower, changed cloths and was heading for "mongkok" (been already there on day 03) to meet with Monique and a friend of hers, Winnie. Monique is a pen friend of jake's girlfriend Andrea. Andrea wrote her an email and asked if i could get a guide for one day, and she agreed. later Monique's husband Derrick joined us. we were strolling around went to a soya restaurant. they had all kind of tofu stuff there. like a sweet soya bean thing that reminded me of pudding somehow. then some deep-fried tofu, and some other deep-fried tofu thing with a fish paste layer on top of it. all very delicious and very healthy i guess.
next thing they showed me was "temple street"[115-126]. though i've already been there, this time all the shops were opened and the market was full of life. they had all kind of stuff there. from clothes to electronic things and hello kitty stuff for the kids. strange, yet fascinating mixture. oh, and here i saw the first cat on hongkong! actually i saw four all in all.
then we decided to go to the "HK jockey arts club"[127-128,138-143], a place that houses studios of loads of artists. one of them was specialised in glass production[129-137]. and we had the chance to watch him doing his art. it was time for dinner. so my very friendly asian guides asked me where i want to go, and i decided (of course) for traditional local restaurant. so they brought me to some area where there was no other caucasian being besides me. at the restaurant[144-145] Derrick ordered something for all of us. they brought goose with sweet-sour sauce[147], rice mixed with dried shrimps[148], vegetables with garlic sauce[149], chicken with onions[150], and this pot[153] full of weird things. in there was pig liver, pig hind gut, and frog-legs. though i knew how liver tastes the rest was new to me. the hind gut was not my thing, but the frog-legs were quite delicious.
after we finished eating and drinking we drove back to "nathan street", once more passed by the "temple street market"[152-168] and finally split up at "nathan road". this was a very nice and enlightening evening with three inhabitants of hong kong. thanks very much to them.

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Fri, 25 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 03 (0 comments)
day 03 of my trip to an exceptional city of china. on my plan: "kowloon park" (which i didn't visit yesterday although it's just around the corner of my hotel), "yau ma tei" and "mong kok", and "wong tai sin". good thing: i found a MacDonald's in kowloon park. bad thing: they don't have croissants. just "choco-pies". oh well... one day i will find my perfect breakfast here in hongkong. i hope. kowloon park was full of life. it was full of old people doing all kind of activities, such as "qi gong", "tai ji quan", or... honestly, i have no idea what they actually did. but it's the cliche of china: old people doing exercises in parks. that's exactly what i got. and it was fun watching them. some where really elegant, smooth, and such[019], others where... quite the opposite. but, everybody was physically active, and that's what counts i guess. some in groups[022-023], some alone[044], but everyone with total devotion. some even had swords[024-026], some had fans[028-029,032-033]. others played instruments[005-006] and/or sang[009] (both can be weapons too).
besides old and/or active people there are loads of birds and turtles (and other animals such as dragonflies and parrots and pigeons in cages) in and around the ponds.
quite close to the park was "tin hau" temple[056-065], a very small temple, where taking pictures was prohibited (as usual inside the temples). the way back[066-067] to the closest underground station brought me through the skyscraper valleys back to the main street of "tsim sha tsui", namely "nathan road". i will from now on try to reduce skyscraper photography as you might, by now, have already found out that they are... huge. and everywhere. and ugly. most of them. some are nice[049] and modern[050] though.
the metro brought me straight to "wong tai sin" station, where one can find the "sik sik yuen wong tai sin" temple[072-140] - a huge temple complex. since japan has taught me i dig temples (and shrines), this was my little heaven in hongkong (and a rather time consuming one). but before i went to the temple i cooled down a little in a close by mall called "wong tai sin mall"[068-071,141-147]. i started my temple tour in front of the main temple(s) where there are two floors full of soothsayer's booths[073]. loads of them were occupied, most of them with couples. quite interesting actually. next stop was a huge garden called the "good wish garden"[074-127]. again turtles, dragonflies, and huge fish were all over the place. very peaceful, very quiet, almost no people there - absolutely wonderful and impressive.
now it was finally time to enter the main temple. inside the temple buddhisms, taoisms, and confucianisms is practiced. thus there were quite a lot of people, having tons of incense sticks lit. inside the temple buildings there's always so much smoke of them, i always get a little dizzy when being in there for a longer time. i guess the people working there are on those incense stick drugs all day long. must be the reason they all were so very friendly to me all the time.
to get some water and onigiris (didn't know they have them here too) i went back to the mall. in there i found a small market, where they sold things like fish-slices, chicken-something and salted raw, fried and deep-fried fish. same with beef, where they had dark-red slices of meat. looked strange and unknown to me. also they had beef tripe on a stick. very... not delicious.
i think i will get a t-shirt saying "want no suit, got apartment". whenever i'm on "nathan road" (on which my hotel is) all kind of guys ask me whether i want a suit (tailor made of course) or if i need an apartment. honestly, do i look like a guy that needs or even wants a suit? and if i would need an apartment, shouldn't i somehow have some luggage with me? unfortunately this is really annoying. but i guess that's the price for the low budget hotel. worth to pay actually.

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Thu, 24 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 02 (0 comments)
having plenty of sleep i felt totally fit on day 02. so, according to the tradition when i was in japan, i was searching for a MacDonald's restaurant to have black coffee and croissants. unfortunately i haven't found one. instead i ended up at a starbuck's cafe, full of americans (or english?). so i had a tall americano (following the tradition i started on my america trip) and a blueberry muffin for breakfast. i decided to explore my neighbourhood today, called "tsim sha tsui". first stop was "1881 heritage"[001-015], a former marine police headquarter, which is an old victorian building. today there are all kind of luxury shops in there. first time i got strange looks today because i definitely didn't fit in there. near by was a construction site, and skyscrapers. but skyscrapers are actually everywhere. almost all of them are old, ugly, and huge, but somehow that's something typical for hongkong i guess.
next i took a walk along the waterfront[016-046], where one really has an awesome view on the skyline of hongkong. during the day i always went to shopping malls from time to time to enjoy the cool air inside, since outside it's really hot. though there's always strong wind it still is hot. inside the "harbour city"[022] mall there were all kind of luxury stores again. second time i got strange looks today.
some special things (amongst the really fabulous view on the other islands) along the waterfront are the old clock tower[049] (unfortunately not open to public), stuff at or in the "HK cultural centre"[047-089], and the "Avenue of stars"[090-120], where all kind of chinese movie-stars have their names and sometimes their hand prints on the ground, just as in los angeles. notice the construction site using bamboo for building scaffolds[115-117,126].
next i came by the HK polytechnic university[130-137], a very huge campus with loads of buildings and loads of students. a totally busy and crowded place.
on my search for a temple i had to leave the usual tourist roads, and thus ended up in areas where i was the only non-asian person there. still i felt totally safe. was nice seeing a little bit of the non official hongkong. the buildings got even more decayed, the pavements got narrower. that was the third time i got strange looks today. the temple itself was quite strange (compared to the ones i know from japan) and taking pictures was not allowed. too sad, as it was quite a nice one (though very compact, as it was only one room. last stop for today was "whampoa plaza"[149-157], which actually is located in the area called "hunghom". "whampoa plaza" is a shopping mall that is built inside a ship. so within narrow streets, ugly skyscrapers stands a ship, far away from the water. pretty weird, but nice shops inside. chinese people seem to share a lot of stuff they like with japanese people, like the moomins, hello kitty, relakkuma, doraemon, and loads of other stuff i know from japan. in a bookstore i found another book of "chi's sweet home" from which i bought one book in japan, one in america (in an japanese bookstore), and this one here in hongkong (though i think it's translated and not original japanese anymore. not sure though). some more trips and i have them all.
there are ads all over the city that say something about a "dress special day", which will be held on the 30th of september. too bad i don't have special clothes. i wonder what this day will look like...

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Wed, 23 Sep 2009
hongkong, day 01 (0 comments)
HK. no, this time not "hello kitty", but rather hong kong, the first day. long journey to get here. linz to munich, munich to hongkong. all in all an 16 hour trip with about 13 hours of flight. unfortunately no free wifi on the airports in linz nor munich. the legroom on the plane from munich to hongkong was surprisingly ok, still i did not get a lot of sleep. instead i watched movies like "star trek XI", "angels and demons", "night at the museum: battle of the smithsonian", and "monsters vs. aliens". the rest of the flight i spent eating, drinking, or sleeping. at the airport people were very friendly and nice. i got my "octopuss card" which is an convenient way of getting around. you charge the card with a certain amount and then don't have to worry about coins, but just hold the octopuss card to some card reader, and you're done. recharging can be done at any station or grocery store (at least the lady who sold it to me said so). hongkong (so far) is so totally different from tokyo. here i really get the impression that it's a mega-city. narrow streets and all of them are totally crowded - there are people everywhere. but that's only my first impression so far, since my hotel is located in one of the busiest districts in hongkong, namely "tsim sha tsui". the hotel itself actually is also quite... let's call it unique. i'd suggest you read the wikipedia site for the building to get an impression. now i'm tired and having headache. but i try to stay awake a few more hours to get back into the normal day-night-cycle. tap water has chlorine smell, still i will take a shower now and then go to bed.

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Sat, 05 Sep 2009
ars electronica festival, day 03 (0 comments)
a performance at the brucknerhaus by prix ars winner lawrence malstaf was my first thing to see on day 03 he and two girls get vacuum packed between layers of transparent PVC. the result is quite strange and fascinating at the same time. people hanging and being forced into a certain pose.
next attraction of the day was the presentation of the creatures for the klangwolke to the public on the main square. loads of animals, loads of people, and as usually loads of press and media people there. yet a very nice spectacle, since all the people of linz seemed to be involved by this huge project. really nice to see the creators of the animals make their puppets move and behave almost as the real animals would do. there were the snails crossing a big street with heavy traffic at a very slow speed, whereas leopards are running around quite fast making huge leaps, scaring off children.
once all the animals were spread all over the town i went to the university of arts again to take a closer look at the exhibits again. a girl was really giving a great performance at the headbanger-hero game. was great fun watching. also i examined the MIT stuff a little closer.
next stop was the lentos museum that has a newly opened exhibition called "see this sound". very weird stuff (actually too weird for me sometimes) in there. will have to go there again one day because they closed the museum and i could not manage to see all the stuff in there. funny thing: all museums were for free with the festival-pass, even the hoehenrausch exhibition in the OK which usually costs around seven euros even with the insider-ticket for linz09). but not this exhibition. it would have cost four euros with the festival-pass, but it's for free with the linz09 insider ticket. pretty confusing pricing policies they have.
finally, at 21:00 the klangwolke started and all the animals had their big appearance. unfortunately i did not have the best point of view so i was mainly listening to the music and watching the fireworks. nonetheless a magnificent spectacle and a great idea to involve the citizens that much with the creatures.

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Fri, 04 Sep 2009
ars electronica festival, day 02 (0 comments)
day 02 of the ars electronica festival started at at the AEC for me, since hiroshi ishiguro was at the museum. a good chance to see the gemini roboter and the creator at the same time. the roboter is quite scary and creepy actually, but also very fascinating at the same time.
on the main square was a huge sphere showing all kind of japanese games. i decided to go there and take a look at the games. this exhibition actually was a little disappointing since i was expecting top-notch games or would be able to get a glimpse on new technologies, trends, or developments. but this was not the case. all games one could try out there were current games that you could buy at any electronic market nowadays. but at least there were quite a lot of japanese people there, among them a tv-crew that interviewed people there (strange enough the interviews were in german).
afterwards i was heading to the brucknerhaus again to take a closer look at the exhibits there since i was quite in a rush on the first day and only had a quick glimpse on them. nice thing about the brucknerhaus was that they had a free wireless network there too (as almost every location of the ars electronica festival.
since the ars electronica gala was about to start at 18:30 i was staying at the brucknerhaus, met some old friends and had a few coffees. thanks to michele i had a ticket for the gala. the gala was like every year (i guess), but one gets a good overview of all the submissions, nominations, and winners. afterwards an excellent buffet and free drinks. nomnom and kampai!
when i left the brucknerhaus heading back to the AEC quarter the fassadenfestival already started. artists had the opportunity to take over the front of the AEC building. the FM4 radio crew had already started with their performance called "FM4 signs & signals". the sound came from the speakers used for the klangwolke that were placed at the riverbanks of the danube. excellent sound and nice visuals - finally the LED-front of the AEC was used properly.

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Thu, 03 Sep 2009
ars electronica festival, day 01 (0 comments)
yow, again it's the time of the year where linz gets flooded with all kind of more or less weird people - artists, that is - as it's ars electronica festival time again. i started day 01 in the brucknerhaus to fetch my festival pass. there were already a lot of artists with their projects and exhibits. besides urine treatment to make it drinkable water again, strange fossil creatures, and a shoe made of flesh and skin there was loads of other weird and awesome stuff. next stop was the opening of the exhibition on the second floor of the ars electronica center with a focus on japanese artists. again loads of strange and fascinating stuff and a lot of media and press people. since it was quite crowded in there i decided to go on to the AEC quarter, which is located outside on the huge concrete area next to the AEC.
next i rushed to the opening at the kunstuniversitaet. they had an area with works from the MIT lab and another area with works from local artists. the opening itself was like a baroque ball with people with masks and beautiful dresses and suits. unfortunately most of the MIT stuff was behind glass-cubes and not interactive at all. too sad, too bad. funny things one could see there was a headbanger-hero and a hello-kitty game.
on the third and fourth floor (but actually not allowed for the public, but i sneaked in) of the kunstuniversitaet were the self-made animals for the klangwolke ("die flut") which will take place in a few days. rooms full with boars, snails, sharks, leopards, lions, gorillas, crows, unicorns... no wait, no unicorns, but dinosaurs were up there. very impressive what people made there (they were already working on those animals since may).
next opening took place at the OK. to get there it usually takes about five minutes by bike. but it starting raining cats (meow) and dogs just when i got out of the art university. so this tour took me a little longer and i was totally wet. i got soaked to the skin. but the shower was worth it - another bunch of awesome exhibits on the reopened first floor of the OK. most impressive stuff to me was a plotter that was (ab)used to write the bible with a calligraphic pen. it took the machine four lines to draw a simple "a", for example. another nice thing to watch was the "nemo observatorium", a transparent PVC cylinder with styrofoam beads in it that get blown around and form random patterns inside the cylinder.

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