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The last time I visited Amsterdam I fell in love with the city. It helps I have friends there, but its quiet energy will capture the heart of the biggest skeptic. The canals, the architecture, the people – it all got me. Many times I’ve tried to explain what makes Amsterdam so special, but my words fall short of what I felt when I visited. Then, late the other night my friend Nalden emailed me an amazing gallery of photos. Each picture nails it. Pim Hendrikson’s photography evokes the subtle unexplainable spirit that lives in Amsterdam. If you have the opportunity to go, I definitely recommend it. Click read more to view a sampling.

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Featured in: ART + CULTURE / Categories: culture, photography, people, places



We’ve been plotting to make a trip to Iceland for ages. There’s something mysterious and exciting about the destination. I remember being at a barbeque one summer and a friend of ours was selling everything he had so that he could go there to quietly make music outside the din of NYC. That was my first memory where I thought I have to check this place out. The second is the following video by Inspired by Iceland.

Sure there’s been tons of news about Iceland’s volcano, ash and how to pronounce its name. But I think the Inspired by Iceland project does an excellent job of redirecting this media coverage to all the positives. As they describe it: "The eruption in Eyjafjallajökull has given Iceland media attention like never before. The downside of course is that people are nervous about coming to Iceland at the moment. Some think that the whole land is covered with ash and that Iceland is in a state of emergency. The truth is that only a very small part of Iceland is being influenced by the eruption. This is of course a big challenge for Iceland because tourism is a big and important part of the Icelandic economy. For that reason the Icelandic state has teamed up with the tourism industry to get the true message across about Iceland.” Click Read More for additional information and to watch the video.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: culture, film, social, places


la melodia

In our upcoming edition of City Notes Print (coming out soon), we traveled to Amsterdam to interview hip hop duo La Melodia. In our conversation we discuss their sound, history and the city they call home. Recently, they released a fantastic limited edition record on one of our favorite music labels, Record Breakin Music – founded by our resident music writer, Bruce Campbell. So, it’s only natural that we have him pen a few words about the project.

Written by Bruce Campbell: La Melodia consists of female MC Melodee and producer/DJ I.N.T. The duo stand for warm, soulful yet raw hip-hop music from Amsterdam. Their latest gem Chemistry / Working on It is a limited edition vinyl release (remember them). Chemistry is a return to the boom-bap style of hip hop with Melodee talking about relationships that we can all relate to. While Working on It introduces soulful newcomer, Steve Hartley. This instant classic has the perfect vibe that La Melodia is known for. As summer approaches, these songs are fitting – reminiscent of our youth when there wasn’t a care in the world. Click Read More for a sample of their sound and for additional information.

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Featured in: AUDIO VISUAL / Categories: culture, people, music


Rosenthaler Platz Paint

Traffic is a burden. Traffic is a drag. But rarely is traffic considered beautiful. A few days ago we came across this insane exhibit of street art where thirteen cyclist dumped various colors of paint on the streets of Berlin’s Rosenthaler Platz – one of the city’s busiest intersections. While many were ticked about the paint, the vandalism and the disruption, we’re fascinated by the unapologetic beauty of the final result. Ah the dilemma of guerrilla art. One person’s Picasso is another person’s insanity. Click Read More for additional information and photos. View City Note.

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Featured in: ART + CULTURE / Categories: art & design, culture


art space tokyo

Written by Elsa Brown: Art Space Tokyo is the kind of gallery guide we wish we could find for every city. The book features intimate portraits of twelve contemporary art spaces in the city, accompanied by black and white illustrations from artist Nobumasa Takahashi. The pages include in-depth interviews with curators and directors, as well as maps of each gallery’s neighborhood, plotted with recommendations of “the best food, coffee and sights to enjoy an afternoon of art viewing.”

The book’s first printing has been sold out for a year, so the editors are fundraising for a reprint, and to develop an iPad edition of the guide. You can help support our friends, Craig Mod & Ashley Rawlings, in their efforts here. Click Read More for additional information and photos.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: art & design, culture, museums, people



Written by Elsa Brown: Urban foodscapes—their compositions, histories and potential futures— are the focus of The Foodprint Project, a recently launched series of international conversations about food and the city. The ongoing exploration, based at the project website, will be punctuated by physical events in cities, the first of which took place recently in New York.

Studio-X hosted an afternoon of free panel discussions that examined the way food shapes the city of New York, from a cluster analysis of bodega inventories to an examination of how zoning and policy shape the city’s food systems. With panel titles like “Zoning Diet” and “Edible Archaeology” the discussions featured: “designers, policy-makers, flavor scientists, culinary historians, food retailers, and others, for a wide-ranging discussion of New York’s food systems, past and present, as well as opportunities to transform our edible landscape through technology, architecture, legislation, and education.”

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Featured in: FOOD + DRINK / Categories: food, culture




Last Friday’s trip to NYC kicked off a fantastic weekend. The unseasonably warm evening played host to a new exhibit at Printed Matter, one of the city’s best bookstores. Megawords Magazine partnered with the well known shop for a show entitled, Hi, We Made A Magazine for You. Good friends and great atmosphere blended seamlessly with the Magazine’s authentically inspiring ephemera which was layered on walls, stacked in piles and captured in glass displays. We’re long time fans of the publication and highly recommend visiting the exhibit if you’re in NYC.

As Megawords describes: “Our mission is simple: to document our surroundings, experience, to have a voice free from the noise of commercialization and competing novelties, and to create an open and active dialogue between Megawords and the community at large. We have self-published twelve free issues, broadcast a weekly internet radio show, and organized multiple events and performances under the banner of Megawords. With time came positive feedback from a diverse audience and a strong realization that this project had a profound impact.” Click Read More for additional information, photos and video.

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Featured in: ART + CULTURE / Categories: art & design, culture, photography

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