September Favo​rites :: anything zen & a bit more

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Yesterday I was thinking, my posts are exactly like a meeting with like-minded people: I usually cook/get something delicious to eat, Ro puts in an eclectic soundtrack and then we chat about art in general and about inspiring books, films, series, and music as well. It’s always pretty entertaining, fun, and sometimes mind-blowing as well. So welcome to my world. ;-)

#foryoursoul: This summer, Ro and I were invited to our friends that are masters when it comes to homemade sushi. So I was thinking to bring some Asia-style salad I came up with that includes any kind of root veggies (I used carrots), cucumber, sesame oil, rice vinegar, sesame, and coriander.

#foryourears: On Sep 12, Inner Demons from Florida/USA released “IND047” by Signalstoerung. It’s a 3” hand-stamped CD-r containing pretty dark and heavy noisy tunes. I am so proud of Ro, since this is his second release this year on a cool independent label and he keeps creating and creating the coolest stuff I ever heard… He really has a flow now (and I am secretly hoping it will infect my creative power soon).

#foryoureyes: A few weeks ago, I got a very friendly invitation from the makers of Monumenta to come and see this contemporary art and music festival in Leipzig. Since I am always on the hunt for something I haven’t seen before that prevents my mind from getting bored, I went with Ro on one fine Friday evening to the old industrial area called Pittlerwerke where Monumenta takes place until Oct 13. May it be my lack of seeing interesting visual arts lately or my non-existing muse to create something myself this year or may it be something totally different, but I have to say that Monumenta really is something you should see. Ro and I discovered many fascinating things and got the one or other inspiration. Besides seeing amazing sculptures, huge paintings, and pretty cool installations, we both agreed that we liked most the works of Hans Peter Adamski. He e.g. shows black squares on a natural-white black-sprinkled ground with squares slap written on the bottom. Pretty cool but confusing, isn’t it? Which brings me to…

#foryourmind: This summer, I really wanted to find out and understand everything about Zen. So besides some other books on this topic, I read “Die große Befreiung” by Daisetz T. Suzuki, an introduction to Zen Buddhism. After reading this book, I first found the answer why Zen teachers in kung-fu movies usually act so weird. ;-) I also figured out, that even Zen seems to be the easiest thing to do, it might be the hardest thing to do at the same time. Well, I won’t explain how Zen works now, but for me, it is a perfect match to discovering Adamski’s art, to Ro’s music and to my attempt to live an easier and more minimal/essential life in general. So when you get behind Zen, I think it’s really as cool as my wooden scarf after a night walk in a song. Or something like that (at least I tried). ;-)

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August Favo​rites :: a native american memoir, a vj video clip​ & a few more + a book giveaway

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This summer keeps being an adventurous and exciting one. :-)

#foryoursoul: During such a hot summer like this, having different cold recipes on hand is good. This is a cold (or alternatively lukewarm) rice pudding with fresh, cold, partially pretty sour berries, which were previously marinated in raw cane sugar and fresh basil. Super refreshing.

#foryourears: Ro keeps being very creative these days and put together a three-part podcast called “Exploring the Arabic world with Muslimgauze”. Muslimgauze is an artist we admire for many years now. He had such an extensive output and created various songs that are very cool to listen to or became hits in independent clubs. Since I discovered Muslimgauze, “Your Arms, Our Opium” was my favorite track and it still is a pretty cool one, but when I was listening to Ro’s selection, I discovered many more and stuck with “Lahore” and “Turn Left for Jabaliya”, which you’ll find on part 3. So have fun listening, I am sure you’ll find some crazy tunes.

#foryoureyes: When Ro and I create audiovisual events featuring electronic music, we love to collaborate with the very talented TiND (thisisnotdesign) from Montrèal, whose mastermind Francis is also a member of our artist collectives Global Noise Movement and Adventurous Music. signalstoerung x TiND :: S9″ is the latest production, so please enjoy.

#foryourmind: I am very proud of and super excited about the book “It’s Only The Beginning – The Memoirs Of Lakota Warrior Theȟíya Kté From Wounded Knee” by Garry Rowland. Since 2015, the author and I were working together to create this publication which is out now and available in bookstores all around the world and online. It is based on interviews the author and I took via e-mail, messenger, and in person, and many people helped with knowledge and skills and photography to make this book happen. In his memoirs, Garry Rowland tells about growing up in a traditional Lakota family on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota (USA) in the 1950s, about becoming a warrior at the age of twelve, followed by his involvement in history-making events such as the seventy-one-day takeover of Wounded Knee in 1973 and the Mní Wičóni movement to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline in 2016/17. It is written in English while using words and terms of the Lakota language. I cannot pick a favorite quote since the whole book is such a unique masterpiece, but I can highly recommend it because it is both a document of American history with an outlook of what can be done to make indigenous people’s lives better and a great portrait of the Lakota ways of life. You can get your own copy at your favorite bookshop around the corner or on Amazon.comAmazon.de, and bod.de. All the income from the book sale will help to support the Lakota people. 

##giveaway## 

I have one copy of “It’s Only The Beginning – The Memoirs Of Lakota Warrior Theȟíya Kté From Wounded Knee” by Garry Rowland to give away to one lucky reader. All you have to do is to share this link on social media while saying why you are interested in this book and letting me know via thisistopa@gmail.com. On August 31, I pick one person randomly. Good luck!

Summer in Leipzig :: go-to places and must-do things

Hello reader, these are my favorite spots to go or coolest things to do around here this summer! So please enjoy LE.

#foryoursoul: Die freche Elster (for Wildschweinburger or the Birdie) // Deli (for literally everything) // Tonis (for sesame icecream) // lauritz (for delicious cake)

#foryourears: Halftime (for different styles) // Rosental (for wildlife sounds) // Best of Demo-Dandies (for experimental electronica) // Technology And Planetary Powers (for noisy tunes)

#foryoureyes: Markkleeberger See (for a surreal view) // Clara Zetkin Park (for so much green) // City Hochhaus (for a great topview) // FANG (for art and design)

#foryourmind: Leipzig Riverside Forest (to calm your mind) // open-air cinema (to relax your mind) // Behind the Wall (to uplift your mind) // Unverpackt (to challenge your mind)

Well, have an adventurous summer! See you soon! :-)

June Favo​rites :: abstract minimalism, a sandwichburger & a few more

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Hah, and I was thinking, today is the fourth Friday of the month. ;-) Well, it’s not, but nevertheless, I have exciting news to share I talked about in my last two posts and they are still relevant. Very relevant. :-)

#foryoursoul: It’s been a while since I came up with a sandwichburger. This one is made with bread Ro baked and Asian lettuce. Fried sweet potatoes are on the side. Feel free to send me a message if you are interested in the whole recipe.

#foryourears: After being a devoted musician since the mid-1990s, Ro landed a record deal with Hymen Records this year! Yeah! I am so very proud of him and over the moon happy for him! So under his artist’s name Signalstoerung, Ro did some sound research and created an abstract and minimal and also pretty experimental atmosphere I (and you probably too) never experienced in music before. So his debut “S” is a really cool album you can get in all music stores worldwide, on all platforms such as iTunes, DiscogsBandcamp or Amazon, and of course on the label’s website (¥858). My favorite song is S2, it still causes the strangest emotions when I listen to it. “S” has already been featured on Igloo Magazine.

#foryoureyes: Yeap, I know, this looks like the cover of Ro’s album. And you are right, it is the cover picture indeed. Once the album was finished, I proposed Ro my design for his album cover and I was very happy when he said he liked it. The label liked it as well so here I am, the proud creator of a published drawing. It’s pretty cool, but also still surreal somehow.

#foryourmind: I haven’t read Adam Grant’s “Originals” yet, but I heard good things about it so I plan to read it this summer. The cover artwork is worth an early blog post already, I think. ;-)

Well, summer break is around the corner, so stay tuned for some tips in case you spend the summer in LE! :-)