The Culture Trip: June Newsletter

Summer, is it really you? This may be the first time in our collective memory that we have approached summer so cautiously. And yet, this will only motivate us more than ever before to live it like we mean it.

Maybe we will discover the beauty in our own back yard, or on the peaks of our own mountains, rather than on a most sought-after beach or photogenic destination. And maybe we will start keeping these special moments to ourselves. Maybe we will make every outing special and poor our heart into it, talking to each other, thirsty to hear each other’s stories and looking each other in the eye instead of taking selfies and constantly checking our phones. Maybe we will start investing in our local independent movie theatre or in our local indie bookshop instead of crashing on the sofa in front of Netflix or of our home video or instead of reading an e-book. Maybe we will support our own communities and they can regain their pride. Maybe we will travel with much more purpose, not just because we have the means to. Maybe we appreciate our educators and teachers more and don’t kid ourselves that our home-schooling comes even close to everything they teach our children every single day with a smile on their face.

Maybe we rethink our idea of home: as in not in the middle of the bustling city to broadcast our status, but tucked away in the serenity and freedom of the countryside to make us feel safe and secure and happy even in terrifying times. Maybe we start to choose the news and the people we want to listen to. Maybe we start to value ourselves and not what others put value on. And maybe we remain calm and collected even if the restrictions have started to be lifted and think for ourselves instead of following the crowd. There are a lot of maybes. Because these are still uncertain times and there is a long way to go before this is over. There are still lessons to be learned, but people, whether to smaller or radical degrees, will change. And our lives will change, too.

In the meanwhile, here on the site we will continue to navigate through a wealth of great stories through our own experiences, from books and movies, and with the contribution of amazing interviewees from all over the world, and my message is going to be even stronger as the subjects I have long been championing (celebrating culture, creativity, individuality and awareness) are becoming even more important in the current climate. I will also be bringing back the column This Summer We’re Channelling…, will dive deeper into the world of making movies alongside film industry insiders and, yes, I will daydream about going to the movies again. Because some things need to go back to the way they were.

Photographs: Classiq Journal | Photographic print of image to the right available in our online shop.

Hilarie Burton Morgan was an actor before becoming the co-owner of the Mischief Farm in New York’s Hudson Valley and author of The Rural Diaries. When her local bookstore, Oblong Books, had to lock its doors, she asked her fans to shop locally and buy her book (she signs every copy) from the independent bookshop in her small community of Rhineback, N.Y. The people listened and Oblong became the epicenter of The Rural Diaries, shipping books all over the world. “I hope people will remember this when things start to go back to normal. The small stores provide a level of care we should reward,” says Hilarie.

Acclaimed cinematographer Roger Deakins has started a podcast, Team Deakins, with his collaborator, James Deakins. They start with a submitted questions and end … “who knows where”, and they are joined in some episodes by friends or colleagues.

How will the travel landscape look like when this is over? The way we journey will be changed forever.

Photographer Todd Ritondaro interviews photographer Oddur Thorisson on his podcast. They talk about all things photography, about how Oddur collaborates with his wife, Mimi Thorisson, on her cookbooks, and much more.

From the latest Idler issue: Michael Palin tries to take it easy … and fails.

Film music composer Alexandre Desplat talks about his scores for Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch and Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio.

Abel Ferrara’s Tomasso, which follows Willem Dafoe as an American artist in Rome, inspired by the director’s own life in the eternal city, will be arriving tomorrow, June 5th, to virtual cinemas. Here are the virtual cinemas where it will play.

L’extravagant monsieur Piccoli (The Incredible Mr. Piccoli): Director Yves Jeuland looks back at the exceptional career of the French actor, who died on May 12, based in particular on his collaborations with Claude Sautet, Luis Buñuel and Marco Ferreri, three of the many more talents he worked with, from Jean-Pierre Melville to Alfred Hitchcock to Jean-Luc Godard. More than half a century of cinema seen through the career of one of the greatest actors that France has known. The documentary will be available for streaming online on until June 18th.

Photographs: Classiq Journal

Steve McQueen: In His Own Words*, scheduled for release this June, draws from more than five decades of media coverage, memorabilia and detailed research by author Marshall Terrill. Through a wide array of sources, interviews, published articles, personal letters and audiotapes, we get to see a portrait of Steve McQueen in his own words.

We don’t know how to breath. It’s a fact. And the current health crisis has put a new spotlight on respiratory illnesses and the breaths we so often take for granted. Terry Gross talks to James Nestor about his book, Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art (out in the US in May, available for pre-order in Europe).

Photographing the films of Ingmar Bergman: stories from Sven Nykvist. “You might say that the study of true, natural light as we actually find it in our daily lives, is a passion with me. For instance, there is a long narrow corridor outside our studio projection room, both ends of which lead out into the open. While sometimes waiting for the ‘dailies’ to be projected, I sit and study how the daylight is spread out on the floors and the walls. Such reality is always around us, affording lessons in lighting technique if we have the patience and the time to observe it.“

There are so many speaking out at the moment, about equality, diversity, change. But there are many statements that simply sound shallow, and, quite honestly, just copy paste. So I want to single out this global community of changemakers who have been facilitating real and lasting change for years, without making it self congratulating or a “thing”. The founder herself and her moving childhood experience are an example to follow. So I would like to ask what does each and every one do when nobody is watching, after the “big” social media moment?
* For an easily accessible, official synopsis of the book, I have linked to the publishing house. However, in these trying times, our intention is to support artists and small businesses of any kind, especially bookstores, therefore we will not link to global online book chains or corporations, leaving you to make the choice of helping your favourite independent bookshop and placing your order with them. If you don’t have a favourite indie bookstore, here is how to find one you can support.

Photographic and film stills prints as well as original film posters are available in our online shop.


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