may 2020 finds is here. the cover photo is celebrating a year of porto.

BOOKS

1. i finished swing time by zadie smith. i loved it! she found a very subtle way to talk about race in an engaging way. i really liked it.

2. i read comeback: a k-pop novel by lyn ashwood and rachel rose super fast. it’s an easy read, but fun enough, especially if you are into k-pop.

3. i finished coal black mornings by brett anderson in one day. the only complaint: he overuses adjectives. other than that, this is the prequel to suedemania. perfect for a suede fan.

4. widow basquiat by jennifer clement was interesting enough if you like basquiat.

5. pachinko by min jin lee is the saga of a korean family living in japan. very interesting. another very good way of showing ethnic otherness.

6. dear girls by comedian ali wong is what you’d expect. an alternative way to milk her current fame. it’s interesting to see her asian american point of view. but the writing is not even funny, just mainly shallow and unsatisfying. don’t.

VIDEOS

7. i started neuromancer by william gibson. but i’ll write about it next month, after i finish it. i bought the book in tokyo. i found a new copy in a second hand store. i’ve first heard about it back in the day when chris cunningham was saying he was going to make a film of it. ever since, chris disappeared. below two of his newest works. i miss him.

8. these are two videos directed by my favourite florist azuma makoto. i love katie scott‘s drawing style (it turns out i already have one book illustrated by her) and murlo’s soothing music (i’m listening to his stuff on spotify now).

9. an interesting video about david hockney.

10. this is a video about the tokyo subway.

11. i’ve been following yuka for a while. i’m not not so interested in mukbang so i watch only some videos. but i thought this red king crab was exceptional!

12. a few more monocle videos.

13. i’ve never watched ru paul’s drag race. but i liked the warmth of these thai queens.

14. i like rick and michele. they both carved a path for themselves, separately and together.

MUSIC

15. if you haven’t heard of mgk it’s because you’re not a kid anymore. anyhow, here’s his latest hit. the videos feature megan fox and travis barker. the third is a mini documentary of the recording process.

FILMS

16. from up on the poppy hill was written y hayao miyazaki and directed by his son goro. it was not good.

17. the wind rises is miyazaki’s latest film. it’s about japanese aviation engineer. since it focuses on the aviation details, the story is weaker. it’s for real fans. of miyazaki or of aviation.

18. nausicaa of the valley of the wind seems a draft version of princess mononoke. i especially didn’t like the upskirts. the girl is supposedly wearing flesh coloured pants under a short skirt. so you will see her bare butt many times. i doubt it was a mistake. this kind of think is called fanservice in japan, for obvious reasons.

19. i’ve watched the newly released becoming which documents michelle obama’s tour for the homonym book. i cried several times. very good, absolutely recommended.

ARTICLES

20. click here for an interview with yoshitomo nara. in spanish.

21. click here to read more about a real life lord of the flies story.

TV SERIES

22. i watched the 2 seasons of selling sunset. it’s about money, 6 foot tall realtors and superstructures in la. i’ll watch the 3rd season.

GOING OUT

23. they started opening businesses in portugal. the quarantine rules are more relaxed. so we went out a lot.

24. one day, we went up the douro river.

25. this month monocle advised a day trip to esposende to see its modernist buildings. so we went. part of them are in fao and ofir, which we fell in love with. we went twice to ofir, too.

if you are interested in the modernist tour, click here.

26. we did a 12 km hike along and around the sousa river area.

27. we went to antas twice. we liked to walk along the neiva river and than on the beach. the area was very nice.

28. we went to coimbra on a whim. and we loved it. we were in town 8 years ago, but this time around we explored different areas. we spent most of the time in the campus. which is a unesco heritage site.

i liked to see it empty.

29. the biblioteca joanina was probably the place i wanted to see most. it didn’t disappoint. using my broken portuguese, i found out from the lady running the tour that she had never seen the library so empty. usually, there are 60 people every 20 minutes. now. we were 5, her included.

30. the botanical garden nearby is another unesco heritage site.

31. we went on the other side of the river to visit the monasterio santa clara nova. it has the biggest cloister in the country as well as the body of queen isabel.

32. the coimbra/aveiro area is full of storks. they nest on trees but especially on electricity pillars like this one. we stopped and watched them!

ART

33. i found collagist lola dupre in a recent issue of vogue portugal. i love her work! so i tore all of her pages from the magazine. and then i bought 3 of her prints. i’ve already framed them!

ARCHITECTURE

34. this is a tadao ando temple.

how is your post-lockdown life?

photo and video credits: little aesthete, copyright holders

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