Friday 25 September 2009

Sea and fishing...

The first time i wanted to see the sea in Britanny/Bretagne i could not believe how big the difference between low and high tide there is! At the Black sea coast, there are sometimes 5 cm, here it can be up 5-10 or even 20 meters....I had to walk once more than 5 minutes from the place where the water surface usually is (by high tide) till where it was by low tide.

I have discovered those cute fishermen houses by low tide in south Bretagne, in Saint Michel Chef Chef. They were looking so lonely on the beach, one abandoned one even reminded me of a spider while looking at it from down. Some people were using those hours when the water uncovers clams and other seafood to collect the dinner...

Saturday 19 September 2009

Guérande, the sea salt capital of France/Britanny!

marais salants GuérandeGuérande musee du sel

The village Guérande is famous for its sea salt production - still the old-fashioned way: by hand! All over Western Europe if you sometimes buy/have bought salted butter, most of the time the salt inside is from there:-) The salt evaporation ponds surrounding Guérande is where everything takes place under the sky. The salt concentration from the ocean is 35gr/l, in the ponds it goes down to 300gr/l within 15 days!!!

Guérande Fortification

I was very lucky and happy to be there end of August when is the actual harvesting-time. There are 2 salt products: the "gros sel"(heavy grey salt this one stays at the bottom of the pond) and the "fleur du sel"(salt flower = the light one, that stays at the surface). One salt evaporation pond (with a size of 7x10m) usually brings a harvest of 50-100kg "gros sel" and 2-4 kg "fleur du sel"...

Guérande paludier dans les marais salants

Monday 14 September 2009

Organic all around: Boulevard Organique Dynamique at Kijkduin beach

Organic Art Flower in Kijkduin

In an age when we are surrounded by organic supermarkets and clothes we can have an organic art too. The proof is the fourth edition of the Kijkduin Organique Dynamique Exposition at the Kijkduin Beach in the Hague, the Netherlands. The art pieces are made partly or 100% from natural materials. They are left on influence of the nature powers wind, rain and sun - from 14th of August till the 20th of September 2009.

Wooden OrganicArt sculpture in_Kijkduin

This year the creative artists present a flower made out of wood skin and feathers, wooden-metallic triangles and plenty more...

Boulevard Organique Dynamique by sunset in Kijkduin

Combine organic art plus a gorgeous sunset and you see the result on the pictures here....

Boulevard Organique Dynamique by sunset in Kijkduin

The first time i had visited this expo 2 years ago i was impressed by one of the sculptures. 8 round balls put on the top of each other covered with lentilles, beans and wheat-see below.

Boulevard Organique Dynamique 2007 in Kuijduin

My only question at the end was: is all the material used bio-degradable or will it all land in the normal garbage...just curious and environmental oriented thinking:)

Sunday 6 September 2009

Les Machines de l'Ile in Nantes

Elephant from les Machines de l'Ile de Nantes
I was VEEEEEEEEEEEERY excited to meet the ELEPHANT!
A friend of mine showed me some pictures (like an year ago) and since then I knew it-I had to go to Nantes and see him...a creature made out of leather, metal, wood and ......12 m high! The elephant is only one part of the extraordinary project called "The machines of the island" /"Les Machines de l'Ile"!
Elephant from les Machines de l'Ile de Nantes
The machines are born from the imaginations of Francois Delaroziere and Pierre Orefice. They represent a mix of the invented worlds of Jules Verne, the mechanical universe of Leonardo da Vinci, and the industrial history of Nantes, on this exceptional site of the former shipyards.
Elephant drawing from les Machines de l'Ile de Nantes
One can pay a visit to the gallery of the machines, where several pieces of art as well as the original drawings are welcoming the guests. Enthusiastic engineers are explaining and showing how each one works: from the reverse-propelling squid, the manta-ray, the lantern of the depths, etc., etc....
Deep water fish from les Machines de l'Ile de Nantes
Another thing to do is to take an elephant ride along the river Loire...and enjoy how the elephant makes wet all the curious kids running in front of him.There are 2 floors on the back of the elephant and its impressive to see from inside how such a huge "animal" even trumpets like a real one:-)