The Universe of Panamarenko

Panamarenko is one of my heroes. He’s a true uomo universale: artist, inventor, engineer, visionary and dreamer. The Antwerp museum for contemporary art (M HKA) currently presents a “small” and comprehensive exhibition on his works. It covers his early years to his retirement now almost 10 years ago. Over the years, I have seen quite a few presentations of Panamarenko’s creations and he never ceases to touch my heart.

The most important thing for me is that once in a while there lies a kind of poetry in what I create.

Here’s my selection of some new and old gems. Enjoy!

Constructing a new Icon

Today the construction site of the new Port House of Antwerp was open  for visitors. I was one of the lucky ones to explore the site, almost 2 years before it will be the new landmark for Antwerp. One of my favorite architects, Zaha Hadid, designed this beautiful ship in the sky.

The ‘ship’ that will be build on top of the old fire station will be an eye catcher in the Antwerp sky line for sure. It’s a celebration of two of its industries: diamonds and port activity.

Now, still a construction site, but in two years time Zaha Hadid’s ship will rise:

In 2010, the original Port House looked like this:

Port House

The central tower has been removed and in front of the house lies now a giant dig hole where the concrete bearer of the ‘ship’ will be raised:

Port House Antwerp

The inside of the old fire station is now stripped completely. All electricity and facilities are removed. Also brick walls have been cut out:

Port House Antwerp
These pipes are silent witnesses of times past and now small works of art:

Port House Antwerp

The stairs are carefully wrapped in wooden castings to protect them from harm by all those rough workers who are taking over the building. Banisters and original floor tiles will be preserved and renovated so the link with history is kept:

Port House Antwerp

I’m really looking forward to next year, when the giant steel construction will be visible. I hope the builders can keep to their time schedule. Since in 2009 the new Port House was announced to be finalised in 2013 (source — in Dutch).

More information on the building by Port of Antwerp and Zaha Hadid Architects.

Street address:
Siberiastraat 20
Antwerp (Belgium)

My 2013 resolutions part 3 – New York & Pennsylvania

Every once in a few years I get the urge to visit New York City. I cannot explain it rationally but the City feels like a second home town to me. This fall I will cross the Atlantic, this time with a cruise ship. Yay! With New York as a starting point I will be visiting one of the most iconic places of the United States: Fallingwater!

Continue reading “My 2013 resolutions part 3 – New York & Pennsylvania”