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The Silk Road: Buxoro, The Enchanted City

Further in the west there lies the other majestic city along the Silk Road: Buxoro or Bukhara. While Xiva is a beautiful but somewhat enclosed desert city, in Buxoro the connection to the world outside of Central Asia can be felt. In particular influences from Persia and India can be seen here (just look at the first picture).  The connecting element to other cities along the Silk Road are the blue cupolas, being the symbols or landmarks of Usbekistan. Oh, and of course the Soviet cars (picture three). I like how the color of many of them still resemble an older kind of (groaning) vehicles 😉 And in case you wonder, the title of an “Enchanted City” was given to Buxoro by the diplomat Fitzroy Maclean, who worked as a diplomat in the British Embassy in Moscow and visited Central Asia in 1938. Later he called the city “enchanted” and compared the architecture to the beauty of the Italian Renaissance. Indeed the mosaics and structures (mostly religious buildings) are a stunning sight. 

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The Silk Road: The Desert City of Xiva

Unlike the last photography series, which I displayed here a couple months after the initial trip, this time I’d like to have it more immediate. So I just came back from an amazing trip to the country of Usbekistan in Central Asia. It is the modern state where many sights of the ancient Silk Road, being the major trading route between China and Europe for more than a century, happen to be. As I was there for work purposes my time for photography was very limited to a couple of hours a day, so I didn’t have the time to wait for the perfect setup very often, but rather tried to capture the beauty and immediacy of the reality in front of me as I saw it in the moment. Our first destination was the city of Xiva (or Chiwa or Khiva) in the Western part of Usbekistan. It is situated close to the Amujaria river within the fertile oasis of Chorasm, itself laying inbetween the deserts of Kysylkum (Red Sand) and Karakum (Black Sand). As the photography displayed here show I think, walking through the city felt like being transported not only within space but also within time to a mysterious, oriental place of merchants, beggars and camels (or Soviet cars) like it already used to be for centuries. In case you wonder, the huge turquoise tower is the landmark of Xiva. It was supposed to be the largest minaret in the islamic world, but the construction was abandoned midway trough. So it was decided to garnish the unfinished structure with beautiful ornaments, hereby showing of the wealth of the oasis city.

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Greek Series: Santorini Sunsets

So finally, here comes the last part of my photographic journey through Greece in September 2013. It all started in Athens, where we found a lively metropole thorn between an ancient and heroic past and a troubled but somewhat forward looking present. Then the road trip through the Peloponnes began, which would lead us through places of myths and of nature. Later we left mainland Greece and continued our road trip on high sea, heading to the famous Cyclad islands. We experienced the young and open island of Mykonos, paid a short visit to the ancient Delos, but the highlight for me was Santorini without a doubt. It is such a photogenic island, it almost suspends any belief. And beyond being just photogenic, it is truly beautiful. And the most beautiful thing about it is something I didn’t show you yet. The sunsets here are out of this world, as kitschy it may sound. So I think that’s the way to end the series and say goodbye to Greece for now.. by showing you some of my favorite moments on Santorini at sunset.

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Greek Series: Shades of White and Black on Santorini

This post is part of the so called “Greek Series”, consisting of photographies I shot while backpacking Greece in September 2013. You’ll find a basic introduction to the series here and the last post featuring Santorini can be accessed here.

In the previous entries I highlighted the blue and red tones of Santorini, in this one I will focus on shades of white and black (in color). Pictures three to five are shot at the famous black beach at the eastern shore of the island.

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Greek Series: Blue Santorini

This post is part of the so called “Greek Series”, consisting of photographies I shot while backpacking Greece in September 2013. You’ll find a basic introduction to the series here and the last post featuring Santorini can be accessed here.

The last entry featured the mysterious red tones of Santorini. While the color indeed is very special to the island, Santorini is also part of Greece. And so it is a blue island after all.

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Greek Series: Red Santorini

This post is part of the so called “Greek Series”, consisting of photographies I shot while backpacking Greece in September 2013. You’ll find a basic introduction to the series here and the last post featuring an expedition to Nea Kameni can be accessed here.

The caldera of Santorini is an amazing place. Due to the major volcano eruption around 3,500 thousand years ago the island is covered in red and black stone, exposing layers of rock which are million of years old. Also the water tends to be reddish at times, making it an almost alien sight.

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