Visited the historical town of Aachen in west Germany at the weekend. Wanted to get in the Christmas spirit and headed to the Christmas market there. Thousands had the same idea! Very crowded but enjoyed seeing the impressive cathedral and city hall. Squeezed in a sketch before looking at the arts and crafts and sampling food from the different stalls. Couldn’t leave without eating wurst and mulled wine.
Travelled to Groningen in the northern part of the Netherlands with laptop and sketch book in hand. It’s a large university city with some impressive old buildings. Weather was terrible! Wind, rain and hale but enjoyed seeing the city on foot. Stopped off for coffee. Took in the view towards the Martini tower.
Once in the Grote markt I stood and sheltered by the tourist info centre and did a few sketches. Really like the architecture and the theatre/bar signs. Sketched cyclists and cars passing from the St Jansstraat.
Enjoyed the Jan Altink exhibition showing the dutch artists paintings and prints from the 1920’s and 30’s. Often painting Groningen landscapes and workers on the land. His influence from the german expressionists (notably Kirchner) is clear. Always like to see prints and liked his etchings and woodcuts. (above)
There’s also an exhibition of traditional and contempory portraits and chinese porcelain which is worth seeing.
I often spend more time in the shop and cafe than I do in exhibitions. The museum is very striking inside and out. Designed by Allessandro Mendini and Phillippe Starck opened in 1994. Futuristic and colourful in design it’s a nice place to relax. I liked the interior design of the cafe with ‘twig’ chairs, red pendant lights and grey walls. I ordered the cake with the edible museum photo on top!
I looked out of the window and sketched the cyclists and pedestrians walking on the bridge.