Trunk flea market

There was a flea market a couple of weeks ago in a parking lot in Benfica. An unusual kind of flea market. A trunk market (Feira da Bagageira), to be more accurate. If you were registered, all you had to do was stuff your trunk with junk, park the car in a space and sell your junk. Of course, not all trunks were full of junk. Some of the vendors were noticeably professionals and antique traders. Their level of organization and point-of-sale design were top notch – with all the grandmother clocks, the vintage cast iron kitchenware and the old envelopes, postcards and stamps from people long gone.

Lisboa, Portugal, Benfica, market, book, comics, Corto Maltese, Koinsky, Polish cavalry, Long Range Desert Rifles, antiques

Amidst the organized chaos there was still space for a cookie sale and some yoga and martial arts workshops. I just came for the sketches, but I left with a couple of old friends I met there: Lieutenant Koinsky of the Polish Cavalry and the Long Range Desert Group, and sea captain and adventurer Corto Maltese. Two books I had never read before from them made my day.

Work and leisure in the northeast

Quinta das Pias, Pinhel, Portugal, goat, dog, agro-tourism

An architecture job we were hired to do took three of us on a road trip to the northeastern region of Beira Interior. The gig – the renovation of a typical dark granite house in the small village of Argomil – requires thorough measurement of the house’s geometry. Trouble was that the house was abandoned a long time ago and now serves as home for a bunch of wasps and a ton of assorted crap! Neither of them made the measuring job easier.

So, the good news after a tough afternoon among the wasps was that the place where we would stay for the night was a refreshing plot of land turned agro-tourism resort. A strip of individual rooms all had the same view to the green valley below. In the way were a group of goats and a very old very gentle dog named Tico, a few swaths of different cultures and a swimming pool, perfect to take away the waspy edge off!

Uma só palavra (ROMA)

theater, director, A. Branco, booth, lights, Roma, play

O encenador do espectáculo Uma Só Palavra (ROMA) e meu amigo convidou-me a assistir à apresentação final no Estoril. Pude assistir aos últimos preparativos do grupo, a correcções de luz, os últimos toques na dinâmica de algumas cenas, a colocação do cenário. Muitas coisas podem correr mal quando  se tem vinte e seis actores de idades entre os dez e os setenta e um anos no palco durante todo o espectáculo.

The director of the play Uma Só Palavra (ROMA) (One Single Word (ROME)) and friend of mine, invited me over to watch the final show of the play by Grupo de Teatro de Santo António do Estoril. I got to watch the preparations of the crew. The lighting corrections, the last touches in the dynamics of some scenes, the placement of the furniture. Much can go wrong in a play with twenty-something actors of ages ranging from ten to fifty-something on stage the whole time.

theater, Roma, play, Estoril

Apesar das condicionantes, ficou-se com a sensação de que tudo correu bem. O texto, escrito por Joana Liberal, baseado em factos históricos, contava a história de Miguel de Sousa, um diplomata português destacado em Roma, durante as invasões francesas do início do séc. XIX, que resistiu à autoridade do governo Napoleónico e ganhou a afeição do povo romano no final.

Despite all that, I got the feeling the show went well. The text, written by Joana Liberal, based on an actual historical figure, told the story of Miguel de Sousa, a portuguese diplomat in Rome, during the french invasions of the early 19th century, who resisted the authority of the Napoleonic government and gained the affection of the roman people in the very end.

theater, Roma, play, Estoril

As personagens eram tanto simbólicas (como a multidão romana resistindo aos gendarmes franceses) como absolutas – as criadas, o actor, a condessa, o padre, o Papa, as freiras, o pai ávaro, o gendarme e até mesmo um soldado francês da Grande Armée à conversa com o seu imperador.

The characters were both symbolic (as in the roman mob resisting the french gendarmes) and absolute – the maids, the actor, the countess, the priest, the Pope, the sisters, the stingy father, the gendarme and even a french soldier of the Grande Armée.

theater, Roma, play, Estoril

O espectáculo começa com uma multidão – resistente às forças de ocupação – e acaba com outra multidão – as mesmas pessoas, desta vez rejubilando com a libertação e honrando as pessoas que, com eles, resistiram à ocupação de Roma. Com tanto texto e com tantos actores deve ter sido um grande desafio para todos os envolvidos!

The play starts with a mob – one resisting the occupation forces – and ends with another mob – the same people, rejoicing with the liberation and honoring the people that, with them, resisted the occupation of Rome. Heavy in text and with so many actors, I can only imagine that the play must have been a tough challenge to everyone involved!

theater, Roma, play, Estoril

Bad Mama Classic

Bad Mama Classic, food, chili sauce, promotion, photoshoot, Lisboa, Lisbon

Bad Mama Classic is a hot chili sauce brand with roots in London, Paris and Chad. Jim, the creator, and I met on a windy wednesday and he invited me over for a photoshoot he was doing in the same evening to promote his product. The setup was simple: a street party in the old dock district of Lisboa, organized by La Famiglia, the crew of Pizza em Companhia, a true italian pizza nearby joint – with reggae music, roasted pork, cold drinks and good people. Jim took photos of people sporting Bad Mama aprons and tasting the chili sauce with the pork and a few drops of lemon. Damn, it was hot! But all the spiciness that took over the taste buds respected the throat. That’s a good guy chili!

Bad Mama Classic, food, chili sauce, promotion, photoshoot, Lisboa, Lisbon

Some great pictures and a few video clips came out of the session. I hope Bad Mama is in Lisboa to stay!

Desenho cru with self performances

Desenho Cru, portrait

The june session of Desenho Cru didn’t have performers. Or better still, the sketchers present acted as performers, each posing for ten minutes for their counterparts. Each had to bring an object and pose with it, but only a couple of tonight’s performers had actually brought them.

Desenho Cru, portrait

The warm summery spring night favored an outdoors session, in the nice patio that the studio has just outside the usual sketching room.

Desenho Cru, portrait

Keeping the colors right was a challenge, because of the outdoor lights. The yellows and greens tended to vanish under them. The sketching itch had to be fully scratched on the subway back home. In the summer, there are people riding the subway right until it closes at 1am.

subway, metro, Lisbon, Lisboa