Monday, 16 November 2009

WALKS IN THE DARKEST FOREST




Young British Photographer Stuart Bailes explores woods and glaciers to capture heightened experiences on film.

24 year-old Stuart Bailes likes to walk in a straight line, armed with a large format camera and flash lighting. He transforms familiar spaces into eerie experiences by working at night, often exploring new locations on foot. Bailes has been awarded the Fujifilm Distinction Awards, 2008, the Reginald Salisbury Travel Scholarship, 2007, and MPD Graduate Future Partnership Award, Portfolio Award, 2007. He has exhibited at numerous spaces including the Photographer’s Gallery, London, and at the PhotoEspana, Descubrimientos PHE08, Madrid, Spain. I met with him in London Fields to talk about the land and the image.

Come to the show, up now, through November 22, if you’re in London. http://www.halsilver.com/


Fortuny: What photographers/artists are you inspired by and why?

Bailes: Barnett Newman, Mark Rothko…Abstract Expressionism was one of the coolest things to happen in painting. Bas Jan Ader: he managed to gel aspects of Romanticism with Conceptualism. This is an almost impossible task but he did it well. James Turrell, Anthony McCall: These guys harness light in the best possible ways making light and maths the material of their work. I love lights and I love numbers. Werner Herzog. Herzog uses the lens to present what is true and what is not true and somehow manages to retain Herzog's style in every film he produces. He is often softly Romantic but always aware of this.

Fortuny: Can you discuss the Romantic versus conceptual in your work?

Bailes: I love being on the land, walking on it, thinking about it and learning about it. I want to photograph those incredible moments where the light hits the right place or you see something phenomenal but in making that picture and presenting it something is lost, or left behind in the transaction. I search for alternative means of presenting the unattainable thing that potentially has romantic connotations, for example in the lighting and colours I work with. I enjoy the imagined possibilities of landscape.

Fortuny: What equipment do you use?

Bailes: I use a 5x4 large format camera. I like the historical context of using the 5x4 camera to make 'landscape' photographs.

Fortuny: Do you have any other talents?

Bailes: In 2008, I went on a month long European tour with an Icelandic musician called Olafur Arnalds (www.olafurarnalds.com). I worked as the lighting designer/operator for the tour. We did shows in many different venues with a whole range of specs from tiny clubs in basements to the Barbican and also to a couple of 5,000 capacity outdoor festivals.

Fortuny: How do you pick the landscapes you shoot?

Bailes: I do have a preference for cold places. I have traveled to Iceland a number of times because I love the blue-coloured sky of their dark winters.

Stuart Bailes is exhibiting in Flashforward 2009 at the Lenox Contemporary in Toronto, Canada October 8-25th, 2009 and in the Hal Silver show, which opens 18th November, and runs from 19th -22nd Nov @ The Russian Club, Kingsland Road, London, UK. Check out http://www.stuartbailes.com for more details.

The full interview will appear on Dazed Digital.




Wednesday, 14 October 2009

A Master of Ambiguity

Yesterday touched me. First I went to the Ed Ruscha retrospective at the Hayward Gallery. I overheard him say, “I’ve been doing the same thing for so long I don’t even though why I do it. It’s compulsive. It’s my vocation.”

Then I introduced myself to seminal multi-media artist and asked him where his favourite place in L.A. is. (Mr Ruscha has lived in Los Angeles since the 1950s.) He replied, “Lucy’s El Adobe on Melrose in Hollywood.”

Ed Ruscha, I Was Gasping for Contact, Pastel on Paper, 1976.

Around 7 o’clock, I went to the Robert Mapplethorpe opening at the Alison Jacques Gallery. The sidewalk was crowded with art aficioados rapturously waiting for Patti Smith to play an intimate set in honour of her close friend Robert Mapplethorpe. She began to sing in the doorway of the gallery: When we were young, we had imagination, we had each other… In between songs Patti spoke about walking around New York with Robert.

Standing quite close I sketched her and wrote down her words. On the topic of AIDS awareness, she said, “It doesn’t mean we can’t have fun. It doesn’t mean we can’t be free. It just means we have to love our life and take care of it.” She also advised, “All of you in the next week or two, read Rimbaud, read Jim Carroll and look at Robert.” When Patti sang acapella Because the Night, everyone went silent before tentatively beginning to sing along. She sounded amazing and sincere.



Robert Mapplethorpe, 
Lisa Lyon, 1982, Silver gelatin print, at Alison Jacques Gallery

“I’m glad that you’re able to breathe
I’m glad that you’re able to distinguish me
from the lights along the thruway.
I mean don’t both of us illuminate
the direction which you are taking?
and don’t both weep nervously above
the moist pavement where you move”

-a verse from The Narrows by Jim Carroll


Jim Carroll died a few weeks ago. Here is his obituary.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

O f f s e t F e s t i v a l


I illustrated some of the styles going on last weekend...Click on the image for the close-up details.

Offset Festival takes place in September in Hainault Forest, about 40 minutes from East London to the ticket booth...

Offset is fantastic. It showcases newer bands like Fiction, Wild Palms, and the Horrors, alongside the groups that have influenced them. The vibe is relaxed, (except when Kap Bambino played and everyone went crazy), the music is good, and both years the weather has been perfect- none of the downpour of Field Day or the My-face-is-surely-melting-off-under-this-infernal-desert-sun of Coachella. Everyone meandered over the grass, watched bands, danced around, and cast their eyeballs about. Boys wore short haircuts, black, brogues or Docs, and either high-waisted 1940s style trousers or the old skinny jeans and wayfarers combo. Girls sported black eyeliner, red lipstick, kneesocks, cotton carrier bags, mismatched thrift store gear or neo-gothic frocks and boots. There were plenty of glossy black bobs freckling the grassy fields. S.C.U.M. and Romance seemed to have the most hype. The Slits were mobbed and audience members shook hips on stage. I heard Wild Beasts were amazing, though alas, at this point in the evening I had been whisked back to London by an Italian pixie.
Nice safety pin, Nikola.

You can't go wrong with Chucks.


Check out my interviews with Fiction and Wild Palms on www.exitmagazine.co.uk next week...



The Ecstasy of Saint/the Reece.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

SUBCULTURE WITH LOVE





THE BED'S TOO BIG WITHOUT YOU

By Margo Fortuny

This is about an artist that started out D.I.Y, as in punk style, drag style, taking snapshots of her friends, documenting their lives: getting dressed up, listening to Lou Reed, getting wasted, fucking, being love-seared, dying, hanging out in New York/ London/ Berlin… The subject matter is often relatable (everyone has glanced longingly across a room, eaten birthday cake, peered in the mirror) and even when you haven’t done what’s depicted, you can FEEL it. The sting of youth, the excitement of experimentation, the disillusion of failed love, the aesthetics of a new city, self-transformation…Nan Goldin archived the feeling.

Snapshot-style photography is something anyone can do, from famous artists like Larry Clark and Wolfgang Tillmans to younger sparks like Ryan McGinley... yet Goldin’s work features a unique pathos. Nan Goldin is a snapshot pioneer, a staggering witness to love stories, addictions, nightlife, death, and the quiet minutes that happen every day. She is a historian to her best beloveds. Frank without being sensational, beautiful without being obvious, and cool without effort, Goldin’s photography touches a nerve. What sets her apart is the striking intimacy portrayed, exemplified in her work “The Ballad of Sexual Dependency.”

After studying at the Museum School in Boston, and surviving the suicide of her sister, a young Nan Goldin came to New York in 1978. She was a fan of Caravaggio, Faulkner, Tulsa, Dietrich, Antonioni, and Fassbinder… Back then NYC was punk/ dangerous/ electric with creative fire. In the late 70’s/ early 80’s, Goldin hosted Bowery loft parties popular for the characters in attendance…and the inevitable board games, rolled-up dollar bills, cake, cocktails, and tail-feather shaking. She worked as a waitress at Tin Pan Alley, while pursuing her vocation as a photographer. Goldin was part of the New Wave Life. The era’s parties, pleasures, and achievements were not important. The personal interactions were what mattered. She preserved them. She took pictures at work, out and about, at home, in bed, everywhere.

Goldin was inside the NYC downtown scene, and she documented it. On the topic of Goldin’s contemporaries, Darryl Pickney wrote “This was not the first generation to fall under the spell of the ruinous message that a wild life indicated a fertile imagination, that art was intrinsically progressive, a form of dissent, and that you would have to spend some time in the wilderness because of your daring aesthetic choices…” Goldin captured this 80s New York mood of heady recklessness and creative rebellion, before it burnt out. Many of the people shown in her early slideshows were dead by the 1990s.

As the years passed, Goldin maintained her intimate photography style while getting clean. She expanded her visual repertoire to include daylight, new characters, and more landscapes. The artist continues to create striking portraits and memorialize friends with AIDS. She exhibits internationally, from London’s Tate Gallery to Paris’s Centre George Pompidou to New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

Rewind a couple decades. In the beginning Goldin was presenting slideshows, usually accompanied by live bands, or homemade mixtapes. She worked the projector at bars and nightclubs, in front of an audience of friends. Her first NYC slide show happened at Frank Zappa’s birthday party at the Mudd Club. These slides, which became the seminal “Ballad of Sexual Dependency,” depicted a portrait of the Lower East Side collective experience, and the human practice of feeling and living and looking into oneself.

“The Ballad of Sexual Dependency” created between 1981 and 1996, is a series of 690 slides, shown over a period of forty-five minutes. The slides form a narrative, dealing with identity formed by gender politics, love, and sexuality. The subjects were her close friends assuming various aspects of themselves: lover, mourner, and social self/private self. Each photograph is taken as a tender glance, presenting imperfect people with such honesty and lack of judgment, thus rendering the subjects loveable and beautiful. At the time, the slideshow was radical. Now it is recognized as fine art. Her work is still relevant, as a window to a specific time and place, as a tool for awareness, and as a candid visual language.

Nan Goldin captures the energy between people.

Her work is currently showing at Les Rencontres d'Arles festival in France until September 13, 2009.




Wednesday, 1 July 2009

The Arch





AN ATTEMPT TO LIVE THROUGH A TONGUE-LINED TUNNEL FILLED WITH RED CLOUDS

& CONCRETE FORESTS

A wet collision against the wall!
O the splattering of kisses…
We trade tongues by the bricks.
In the city romance is on concrete,
And the streetlight is our moon.
In between the skinny streets
And dirty sidewalks our footsteps
Leave a trace of happiness…
I hold your hand, rough
Skin stretched over the bones and
Blood of love; in the background
I hear an orchestra of sirens,
Honking and shouts…
In front of me I watch the
Beautiful movie of your eyes, curtained
By damp, black shadows.
Our soundlessness overcomes
The neon noise, and
Inside I sense
Your pulse flickering.

photo by weegee. top photo: unknown source









Wednesday, 27 May 2009

I can't.



In high school I made a mixtape of all the most depressing songs I could think of. I called it I CAN’T… The tape dissapeared. A few years later I made another one. It’s around here somewhere. I’m trying to remember what songs are on it- I haven’t listened to it in a while. The concept was a collection of songs to really emphasize my subterranean feeling until I couldn’t feel any worse and I got sick of hearing sad melodies. The mix included Sigur Ros, Squarepusher’s cover of Love Will Tear Us Apart, the Cedar Room by Doves, Radiohead’s High and Dry, a few others and this song from this one time I fell in love. It was the night before I was moving to Italy and he was going back to California and we knew we wouldn’t see each other for at least a year and he wanted to tattoo a drawing I did on his arm but instead we lay in bed, under a duvet, even though it was August in New York City, and listened to Boards of Canada…


Here are some things I do when I can’t find that mixtape:

+Spread (non-toxic) white school glue on my hands and peel it off after it’s dried. (Not recommended if you’re extremely hairy.)

+Take a walk. Cry.

+Take a hot bath.

+Forget myself with a movie. (example: Wet Hot American Summer.)

+Climb a tree.

+Draw on my arms.

+Write. Paint.

+Hang out with someone funny.

+Wait.




Tuesday, 12 May 2009

THE RAIN

walking in the rain.
crying in the rain.
kissing in the rain.




Rain by Tones on Tail is an epic song.  (Someone should make a better video.)

Haiku (The taste...)
 
The taste
of rain
—Why kneel?


by J. Kerouac 

Monday, 4 May 2009

Tenderness and Restraint




++++
photo credits: M.M., fortuny, fortuny, sabine lynn.


i thought of you.

Friday, 1 May 2009

Looking for a new place to live



photosource: culturemaker archive

So I'm moving out of my flat early summer. I'm looking for a place to live in East London (London Fields, Broadway Market, Shoreditch...)

Do you know anyone creative, quiet, and tidy who needs a flatmate? If so, please find me on facebook and send me a message. A few things I like in a flat: high ceilings, wood floors, old buildings, lots of light, 50s/60s furnishings, books and records...






Sunday, 26 April 2009

On the 2 bus down sunset...

I was going down Sunset Boulevard a couple years ago and I saw this spelled out on a marquee:

LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL AND SO ARE YOU NOW BELIEVE IT.




painting by ed ruscha.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Meander Milk


I study him. He wears no shirt, just cut-off faded jeans, a white flower behind his ear. A hand-rolled cigarette resides in one hand. His bony frame leans forward to look at a calico cat hopping like a rabbit across a garden. The air is silent and moist. Mopeds sputter periodically. The sky darkens, the ocean joins it, and the moon finds a place in the folds of blue. With salted hair and feverish eyes and burnt shoulders and moles polka-dotting his back he is the most astounding creature I have ever seen. I won’t let him know, he wouldn’t believe me anyway. So I look away and ask him what we should do about dinner.
After dinner we share a bottle of the second-cheapest whiskey we can find. Bantering, hopeful, we sit on the whitewashed stairs and observe people trotting by. Goat roasts somewhere and cigarettes are smoked. The beach extends itself into my mind. We hasten.
      The sun rises revealing a beach full of people intertwined. Kicked off sandals sleep next to green beer bottles in the sand. The waves seem hesitant in their approach. Everyone is silenced by immense concentration. We look at each other, aware of our ongoing solitudes. He shrugs. We walk to a bus stop. Kissless times last longer.





Monday, 20 April 2009

New York je m'en fous?

photo by Weegee


I've got mixed feelings about my hometown.

I was born and raised in New York City. I've fed my head with Frank O'Hara and my eyes with Nan Goldin and my ears with the Ramones since i first acquired a walkman. My favorite thing to do used to be walking through the streets at all hours. The sidewalk kept me company. The trees were rare. The city was a symphony.

I used to think New York was the greatest metropolis on earth. When I was 16 with my French library card as a fake i.d. i snuck into Sound Factory and the Tunnel and some long gone bar run by the irish mafia. I was uprocking and exploring until the morning trailed in ruefully...


photo source:newyorkisafriendlytown blog



Last summer in nyc I was lying on my bed, deep in equal parts solitude and procrastination, when a friend from L.A. called to say he was in town for a few days and staying on the lower east side. I threw on a half-buttoned silk man's shirt, tight trousers, heels, and my grandest spectacles, and headed downtown.

We went by bars I had frequented just a few months before. It was ghost town all around. Even pianos was slim pickings. Curse of Monday night or part of the exodus of the avant garde? And when did all these wine bars pop up? I called my sister. She informed she hadn't hung out on the l.e.s. in three years. 90% of my friends here moved away- with good reason it seems. Ok, so I've been out of town for a few years. Has everyone interesting fled to brooklyn? Is there a heartbeat left in this city? A dancefloor worth sticking to? If so, fill me in. Or it'll be me and my mixtapes and Gary Snyder every night i'm back home.

So that's what I was thinking in September. After my last trip to nyc, in January, I decided it's not so bad. The sidewalk still glittered (ground-up crack pipes from the early 80s? erosion? city magic, who knows?) Best food in the world. Pedestrian. Sky not as grey as London town. (Though you forget about it with the 'scrapers hiding it.) The subway for 24 hours, though you better bring a paperback out if you're taking the 4 o'clock in the morning train...and still a few interesting people kicking around.

Still, nyc has lost the urgency and excitement I remember growing up there. The sleaze (which encouraged hedonism and creative freedom) has been replaced with conformist/mass market establishments. Saint Marks Place, once the haunt of Sid Vicious, is now an extended branch of Hot Topic. Everywhere cards. does anyone else remember Coney Island High? Berliniamsberg at Luxxx? Filthmart around 13th st?

Despite its changes, New York is an amazing city with a crazy past. You'll have a good time there. If you're planning a trip there soon, read on past the video clips for a few recommendations:

Some good old-skool NYC Movies: The Warriors, Wild Style, Krush Groove, Downtown 81, Afterhours. NY has changed a lot but they’re fun to get in the city mood.



Downtown 81 a.k.a. New York Beat is a fantastic movie. Basquiat's a teenager, playing himself...



"Meet me at the turnstyle?" fuck yeah. I love Blondie!




Rakim is legendary too...



Some amazing beats and style...



Once I went to a house party in L.A. and this was on in the living room...


And some classics:




MARGO'S GUIDE TO NY

SHOP
The best places to buy stuff is in SoHo, the Lower East Side, and Brooklyn.

One of my favorite stores is The Strand: on 12th St & Broadway, take any train to Union Sq, the best and sometimes cheapest bookstore in the world. Check out the pulp fiction, vintage books, and art books.

FOOD
NYC has some of the best food in the world, especially when it comes to Indian and Italian food. Stay away from any touristy place, in Little Italy, etc.

Chennai Garden: 129 East 27th St, between Park and Lex, fantastic Indian Food.
Dim Sum a Go Go: Order the vegetarian Dim Sum Platter. It’s beautiful.
Café Habana: 17 Prince St, by Elizabeth St. If you go to the Take Out Café, next to the restaurant, it’s cheaper and faster and you can sit there too. Order the Tlacoyo con tres Maria and Tostones and Corn. Or split that with someone.
H&H Bagels: on the Upper West Side, best bagels in the world. Order with cream cheese. londoners, if you think those places on brick lane are good, this will blow your mind.
Pommes Frites: 123 2nd Ave, between 7th & 8th st. Amazing frites. Try the rosemary sauce.
Katz’s Deli: if you eat meat, they have a famous pastrami sandwich you should try.
Serendipity: just go here if you love sweets. Famous fot the Frrrozen Hot Chocolate and the ice cream sundaes. Andy Warhol used to come here and trade his work for food.
Zabars: More of a fancy market, but they have great pain au chocolate, and David Glass Chocolate Cake.
Two Boots Pizza: downtown, best pizza.

Google the addresses. Check Time Out and Paper magazine for listings.

OTHER FUN STUFF TO DO IN NYC:
See the life-size blue whale in the Natural History Museum. I’m serious.
Go to art galleries in Chelsea. Or visit the MOMA, the Whitney, the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Walk through Central Park.

N.B. Cops in nyc are assholes so don’t get caught pissing in an alley/ jumping a turnstyle in the subway (metro), smoking a joint in public, or even drinking outside. My friends and my brother have gotten tickets or arrested for all of the above.

Also, read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith. and Catcher in the Rye, if you haven't already. Feel free to add to this reading list...


epic.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

The Libertine




I painted this portrait on linen for the upcoming exhibition Art Against Knives, (though the subject matter is not specifically related to the event.) Vivienne Westwood and Jeurgen Teller, as well as numerous other talents are contributing to this exhibition, which will raise awareness, and money for Oliver Hemsley who was attacked last August in East London. The show and auction take place May 4th and 5th, 2009.

Check out http://www.artagainstknives.com.








Thursday, 9 April 2009

some poems i dig...




"it is hard to believe
when i'm with you
that there can be anything as still as solemn
as unpleasantly definitive as statuary
when right in front of it
in the warm new york 4 o'clock light we are
drifting back and forth
between eachother
like a tree breathing
through its spectacles"

-frank o'hara, 1960



+++++

"You cannot describe it, you cannot picture it,
You cannot admire it, you cannot sense it.
It is your true self, it has nowhere to hide.
When the world is destroyed, it will not be destroyed."

- probably wumen huikai, around 13th century

+++++

"it isn't gentleness
that you and i are looking for
in the hills and valleys,
it is the cliff, the gorge,
the scraped ocher on the knees
of the slopes
and the red crevice in which the land
shows too, the brilliance of its wound."

-francisco segovia


Painting by Gerhard Richter, oil on board, 1991

+++++

ECSTASY OF CHAOS

"when the immense drugged universe explodes
in a cascade of unendurable colour
and leaves us gasping naked,
this is no more than the ecstasy of chaos:
hold fast, with both hands, to that royal love
which alone, as we know certainly, restores
fragmentation into true being."

-robert graves, 1960s

+++++

"Etoile qui brille
regard humide
fil de la vierge
pitie
flotte au vent
cette compresse sur mon coeur
trop vite trop vite et quel delire
quelque chose vient de se casser
dans la mecanique
de ma vie."

-paul dermee, dadaist

+++++

DEVOTION PROCESS

"It was a crinkled feeling
-a recognition of stiff joy pleating:
a gentle iron stifling discoveries
and nudging calm into the folds.

Hot disquietude burned holes in me
like scorching cloves bearing your name.
Your invisible flames broke my stride
and forced me to decompose in shudders.

Everyday presented that familiar alley,
Where I would wander lost but certain
of my eventual collapse...
I could only turn my head to hide
my pupils screening
the humility of love. "

-m. fortuny


photo by scott payne

+++++

SENSATION

"Par les soirs bleus d'été, j'irai dans les sentiers,
Picoté par les blés, fouler l'herbe menue :
Rêveur, j'en sentirai la fraîcheur à mes pieds.
Je laisserai le vent baigner ma tête nue.

Je ne parlerai pas, je ne penserai rien :
Mais l'amour infini me montera dans l'âme,
Et j'irai loin, bien loin, comme un bohémien,
Par la Nature, -- heureux comme avec une femme."

-arthur rimbaud, 1870

Thursday, 2 April 2009

“Are there any elf nightclubs in Stockholm?”














Stockholm:
we basked in the bright bluish light/
bought shiny old records in perfect condition/
walked around a massive, splintery 17th century ship/
watched wolves run through the forest/
bought design magazines and Finnish vodka/
befriended cordial Swedish boys who cooked us a fantastic dinner that ended with mango sorbet and inky lingonberries/
drank spicy mulled wine on curved orange metal chairs in front of Victorian style wallpaper as 1950s rock & roll played/
walked in the midnight silence and heard the snow crunch beneath our feet/
threw snowballs... my aim is true. but terrible.
stayed with a sleepy eyed friend with elfin locks who cooked us scrambled eggs and flatbread in the morning/
meandered in the clean quiet snowy streets.

It’s not the intensity of London, or the restrained chic of Paris, or the energy of New York, or the beautiful madness of Naples, or the Shangri-la of Los Angeles…Stockholm is politeness, fresh air, efficiency, and tranquility.

I went to Stockholm last week with my friend Mike. We stayed with his aunt and uncle, who were pretty wonderful. Surprisingly, everyone thought I was Swedish.

One afternoon we met up with Eli, a friend of a friend, at Copacabana filmkafe. The three of us sat around a cozy table, sipping steaming fragrant drinks. I warmed up by telling a story about an action-packed night outside a warehouse party in Dalston. Then I asked the local about elves in Sweden. He looked at me like I was nuts.
“Maybe that’s a Norwegian thing,” he replied.
“Cos I had this friend who was quite into them…” I trailed off.
“Though they say if you’re in the country, in the summer, before dawn, if you look in the grass, in the dew, you can see fairies. And, at Christmastime we leave food out for the gnomes,” he mentioned casually.
Ok, so no elves in town, but we have got gnomes running around somewhere?
I buttered a soft slice of bread. Then the conversation moved to morphine and 80s bands. Afterwards, we went outside, past the water glinting in the 3 o’clock light, up a narrow street, to an ace record store.

Here are my suggestions.

TO DO:
Stockholm rivals Paris for the number of museums. Paris has the classic Greatest Hits of Art History whereas Stockholm wins the quirky points. In addition to a fantastic Modern Art Museum and various contemporary art and design venues, the Swedish city has a museum of spirits, a museum of the history of drunkenness, a museum of matches, postal stamps, miniatures, customs (as in the airport kind) the list goes on and on…

Take the ferry to Djurgarden and visit Skansen. Skansen is an amazing open air museum that houses traditional Scandinavian architecture, live reindeer, a pack of wolves, and other exciting beasts. There are loads of other cool stuff to see, including the Vasamuseet, which is walking distance from Skansen. Vasamuseet houses an enormous 17th century ship if you’re into that sort of thing.

If you like holding hands in narrow alleyways and old houses, walk around Gamla Stan.

Go vintage shopping. There are several second-hand stores around Sodermam:
Modern Retro Vintage Store, Wollmar Yxkullsgata 9, Södermalm, +4686407292, Mon - Fri 12:00 - 18:00, Sat 12:00 - 16:00

Beyond Retro, Åsögatan 144, Södermalm +4686413642 Mon - Sat 10:00 - 18:00, Sun 11:00 - 17:00

Judits, Hornsgatan 75, metro stop (a.k.a. T-bana) is Zinkensdamm.

Other cool stores are bookstore Bokmagasinet, Hornsgatan 80- near Judits- and there is a fantastic, cheap, vegetarian place next door, and design store Designtorget, Gotgatan 31, metro stop: Slussen.




GOING OUT
Drinks are really expensive in bars so if you’re on a budget I recommend buying some raspberry juice and vodka (try Koskenkorva Finnish vodka-it’s less expensive than Absolut and tastier) and having a few cocktails before you go out.
Instead of liquor stores/off licenses, they have Systembolaget, which close quite early on Saturdays (there’s one near the Central Train Station at Klarabergsgatan 62.)
I got carded at some places so bring your i.d.

Södermalm is the coolest area in Stockholm, especially for nightlife.

Bars/ Clubs:
Pet Sounds-a bar that’s run by the nearby record store. Order the apple/cocoa cocktail and go downstairs. The music was excellent, though no Beach Boys. Skanegatan 80, metro stop: Medborgarpatsen.

Nada- a cozy but boisterous bar, Åsögatan 140, Skanegatan 80, metro stop: Medborgarpatsen.

Indigo- one of my favourites, modernist décor, obscure music, try the vin chaud (mulled wine), Götgatan 19, metro stop: Slussen. Monday to Friday 5pm-1am, Saturdays 3pm-1am.

Carmen-a lively joint, Tjarhovsgatan 14, closes at 1 am Mon-Sat and 11 pm on Sundays.

The subterranean, kitchy Vampire Lounge has excellent cocktails and drink deals on Mondays. Östgötagatan 41 metro: Medborgarpatsen. Closes at 1 am.

My flatmate informed me that Stockholm has quite a sharp minimal techno scene too.



TO EAT:
Let’s talk about the numerous vegetarian options in Stockholm. Check out: the Copacabana café at Rio Cinema. I ate the lightest, most favourful falafal of my entire life with crisp roasted potatoes, and a tasty yogurt sauce that was a cross between sadziki and raita. Mike had a rich hot cocoa with a dash of chili. There’s also a fantastic record shop nearbye but I can’t remember what it’s called so just explore the area. (Hornstulls Strand 3 , Södermalm Mon - Thu 09:00 - 20:00, Fri 09:00 - 19:00, Sat - Sun 10:00 - 19:00, metro: Hornstull.)

Check out the low-key vegetarian place next to Bokmagasinet, Hornsgatan 80.

Go to a bakery and buy the short, bright green marzipan roll and the small sugary hear shaped cookie. The cookie is paper thin and tastes like Cinnamon Toast Crunch. You might also want to try the soft, twisty cardamom bread.

Across from Zinkensdamm metro stop, there is an unusual supermarket. When you get to the dairy section, you start hearing cow sounds and goats muttering. Are there creatures lingering behind the freezer doors? In the nuts and seeds section, birds tweet. Basically, they have a soundtrack for varying sections. It has a huge selection, especially in the organic/health food department.

All the food I tried in Stockholm was delicious.

ADVICE FOR PRACTICAL CATS
+Before you go, check out the Lonely Planet Stockholm guide from your library.
+Sometimes SAS has better deals than the easyjet style airlines.
+Most things (clothes, alcohol, shampoo, etc…) are surprisingly expensive so pack whatever you need instead of buying them once you arrive.
+Buy a three day bus/metro pass or longer, it’s cheaper. Also, it works for the ferry to Djurgarten.
+Shops and attractions close quite early, between 4-7 pm, though the hours differ in the summertime.
+Check the internet at a 7-11 convenience store. They’re open all night and you buy a voucher for an hour. If you don’t use the whole time, save the voucher and use it at another 7-11.
+Take off your shoes as soon as you get inside someone’s front door. You probably knew that if you have Swedish friends.

http://kafecopacabana.com/
http://www.spottedbylocals.com/stockholm/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swedish_rock


SWEDISH MIXTAPE (spread some cheese on your flatbread): Peter, Bjorn & John “The Chills”, Lo-Fi Fnk “City”, Slagsmålsklubben, “Sponsered by Destiny”
The Ark “Calleth You, Cometh I”, The Shout Out Louds “Impossible”, Abba “S.O.S.”...I know there are cooler bands out there, so please make me a mix/ tell me about them.


















Hej då.