Tag Archives: Austria

A pumpkin parade

30 Jun
A pumpkin parade

A pumpkin parade

A parade of pumpkins

Camera Pentacon Six
Film: expired Kodak Ektacolor 160
Photographed near Wildendürnbach, Weinviertel, Lower Austria, Austria, which is less than 10 km away from Mikulov or old Nikolsburg. 

 

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Film or Digital

20 Jun

What’s better? That’s a stupid question.  Because to me the answer is obvious. That is film. The film is however a dying format. I switched from digital to film in 2008 after almost ten years of shooting digital. My first camera was a Sony Mavica that used quarter 3.5 inch floppies to record images. I guess those 3.5″ magnetic disks were called floppies due to inertia, their 5.25 inch predecessors were indeed floppy like a rabbit’s floppy ears, but they themselves were rather rigid. Though not a scientific test, this shows a degree of difference between digital and film, or wait, between digital and digital since of course film becomes digital when it is scanned. I myself prefer film because in my opinion nothing beats the translucence, the breathtaking tonal depth, the glory of a real analog transparency.  But when scanned it loses most of its luster and I’d say that digital without any intermediary, as in the image taken with a Sony A900, is certainly not worse, perhaps even better, than a 35mm color slide.  Of course  we are talking about display of an image on a computer screen, not the right way to see a photograph   (I believe that transparencies should be projected or looked at through the light while black and white photos optically printed on black and white photographic paper) but as far as computer screens go, the “original digital” is in no way inferior (perhaps better) that the digital image created with intermediary of 35mm E6 film and a cheap scanner.  I am going to shoot film though. As far as it is impracticably possible.

direct digital, Sony Alpha 900

direct digital, Sony Alpha 900

Kodak Ektachrome 100G, color adjusted, digitalized with Canon Canoscan 9000f scanner, No correction

Kodak Ektachrome 100G, color adjusted, digitized with Canon Canoscan 9000f scanner, No correction

Kodak Ektachrome 100G, color adjusted, digitalized with Canon Canoscan 9000f scanner, Photoshop autocorrection

Kodak Ektachrome 100G, color adjusted, digitized with Canon Canoscan 9000f scanner, Photoshop auto correction

It might become impossible at some point. With Kodak out of reversible film business altogether, and only Fuji left that makes E6 film chances are it will disappear in the nearest future. In fact it is already extinct in most of the world. Black and white film might hold on for a little longer, though 120 format is already in short supply, but with really, really only Ilford and neither live nor dead Foma Bohemia left around, the chances of film surviving seems to be slim.

Unless. Unless.

But that’s another topic.

The picture in the picture is that of gorgeous Romanesque church in the small town or rather hamlet of Kirchstetten, famous for its baroque palace (now for sale by the way )  in beautiful Weinviertel of northern Lower Austria, only 17 odd kilometers from my place in old Nicolsburg or Nikolsburg,  now Mikulov, where if one needs accommodations one can stay a night or two at the pension Mikulov or Nicolsburg.

Kodachrome – in Memoriam – St. Petersburg and Kronstadt, post 2

4 Jan

The story of how and why I started shooting Kodachrome – belatedly, in the last months or rather in the month before its demise is in my previous post.  That post also contains pictures of St. Petersburg taken on Kodachrome while I’ll move on. Below are a few more very last pictures of a locale in Russia taken on Kodachrome, late October 2010.  Needless to say that I also took pictures of my kids and friends on Kodachrome (that was the point) but being a private person i don’t of course post those never mind I can’t see how they can be of anyone’s interest. Click any image for larger view;.

 

Russia on last Kodachrome, continued:

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street - the street where I live in St. Petersburg  St Petersburg Saint Petersburg Russia

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street - the street where I live in St. Petersburg St Petersburg Saint Petersburg Russia

Kirochanya 25

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street - - building 24, a nice Art Nouveau building constructed for a Jewish rentier Back in 1904, has a few surviving Art Nouveau mosaics, stained glass - rare for the city that saw so much barbarism within a century - and decor elements, St Petersburg Saint Petersburg Russia

 

chernyshevskaia

(phonetically Americanized mutilation Chernyshevskaya, Чернышевская). entrance too, close to midnight-.

 

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street

 

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street , nighttime - fairly long exposure, the Kodachrome recorded all three states of the traffic light - red, yellow and green

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street , nighttime - fairly long exposure, the Kodachrome recorded all three states of the traffic light - red, yellow and green

 

Domes of the Smolny Cathedral from afar, Kodachrome

Domes of the Smolny Cathedral from afar, Kodachrome, officially the Cathedral of Our Savior, a baroque beauty of rare quality by any standard, is popularly called Smolny or Tar Cathedral though there is not tar-like about it, the origin of the name is toponymical, it was built next to the works that produced pitch pine tar for shipbuilding purpose in the age when ship used to have sails and were made of wood.

 

 

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street -

Кирочная - Kiročnaä Ulica - Kirochnaya or Kirche Street -night

 

St. Vladmir Church St Petersburg

The church dates from 1746 but its current late neoclassical appearance with numerous baroque elements is from the late 18 century (foundation laid in 1761, completed 1768) . The Cathedral and the separate Belfry is a collective work of several architects - Giacomo Quarenghi (the belfry) and the Bartholomeo Rastrelli (the main building) shared with later additions by Abraam Melnikov, Alexander Holm and Luigi Rusca. Behind the Cathedral is an ambulance station - my grandmother was born in Petrograd in 1918 and worked first as a nurse during the Leningrad Siege and after getting her doctor's diploma in 1945 as an ambulance doctor well past her retirement until 1990.

 

 

Somewhere in Kronstadt

Somewhere in Kronstadt (evil Americans and their helpful Russian idiots spell it phonetically as KronsHdadt), anyway these are ruins of apparently 19th century buildings that probably belonged to the navy.

 

Kronstadt fountain autumn scene

Kronstadt fountain autumn (fall scene) - a compact camera loaded with Kodachrome 200 that i took up to Umbria. Kodachrome 200 is a different film that acts differently and has ir rather had as Kodachrome is dead atrocious grain unlike smooth and silky Kodachrome 25 and 64

 

Kronstadt / Kronshtadt - a Soviet monument of some kind

Kronstadt / Kronshtadt - a Soviet monument of some kind

 

Kronstadt Kronshtadt

Kronstadt Kronshtadt on Kodachrome - 18th century warehouses or packhouses and old navy canals where tall ships were repaired equipped or rigged (not like American elections though) and there are ammunition, rope, ship pine tar and other stores. In state of beautiful decay.

Kronstadt / Kronshtadt

Kronstadt / Kronshtadt - Гостинный двор - Gostinny dvor - Merchant yard

 

lada 2105

lada 2105 on Kodachrome, Kronstadt

Hubertuskapelle in Feldsberg – the Chapel in St. Hubert near Valtice in Southern Moravia

27 Dec

I am going to use those  entries for a separate site on Southern Moravia and Weinviertel or the Wine Quarters in  Lower Austria, primarily concentrated on the immediate area around Nikolsburg (Czech Mikulov, also Nicolsburg) but because they are all illustrated with my own photographs, I’ll post them in my photography blog.

St. Hubert Chapel or Hubertuskappele near Feldsberg (Czech Valtice, Kaple svatého Huberta)

St. Hubert Chapel / Hubertuskapelle

St. Hubert Chapel / Hubertuskapelle - side view, Feldsberg, now Valtice, Moravia, Czech Republic, formely Austria - Hungary

Click  image for larger version (and contact me if you want huge ones or an actual print of some image. This story is illustrated with eight black and white analogue photographs ).

The Chapel of Saint Hubert or St. Hubertuskappele
Designed 1848
Built 1854-1855
Architect Hans Heindrich
Designed by Georg Wingelmüller
Sculptor (St. Hubert) Joseph (?) Högler
Getting there – ideally by car and then on foot. Or on car through the forest if you are adventurous enough and can find a breach to penetrate the forest.

A  (somewhat) Longish Introduction

The Chapel located on the hunting grounds of the old Liechtenstein estates between Feldsberg (now Czech Valtice) and Eisgrub (Czech Lednice).

Feldsberg was a German speaking town which was ethnically cleansed by Czech ethno-nationalists in 1945.  Though expelled locals hoped for a quick return, the exile turned out to be permanent and it will remain permanent as long as Austria, Germany and the world do nothing (and so far Germany acting as American puppet did nothing, lest American neocon ally in Prague gets somehow embarrassed or worse, inconvenienced). The “permanence” factor is there  because of so called Beneš decrees. Edvard Beneš (or Benesch) was a misanthrope and a Germanophobe who ordered disenfranchisement, expulsion and murder of some 2.5 million of own citizens because of their wrong (German) ethnicity and language.  Vaclav Havel, who died  recently (and I wrote a fitting obituary for the villain) did make an  apology, sort of, to those expelled by then democratic and pro-American Czech regime but his cheap words were soon forgotten. Beneš decrees have not yet been repealed .

This monument as well as two castles near-by – the  one at Eisgrub and another one at Feldsberg (Lednice and Valtice in Czech) belonged to the Princes von Liechtenstein who were neither Nazis nor Germans.  That fact notwithstanding their ancestral estates were expropriated and the theft was not committed by Stalinist communists but by a regime that was so-called democratic and was (as it is in its revived form) very much pro-American.

To me the story of postwar ethnic cleansing in Czechoslovakia is the ultimate example of double standards in media and education. When in the year 1968 Soviet Union and Warsaw pact quashed a fascist putsch in Czechoslovakia, the events were described as an act of beastly Oriental barbarism and a rape of a little democratic nation. The entire  comic opera Prague Spring affair of 1968 left less than 100 victims. As a comparison –  NATO killed twice as many kids per one hour in Libya. Besides half of the Prague Spring victims were Warsaw pact military personnel. On the other hand the disenfranchisement of 2.5 million people, murder of a quarter million of human being, with adolescents and children being rounded up and machined gunned among other nasty things, wholescale robbery (in fact it was probably the world’s largest single instance of robbery after Bolshevik putsch of 1917 in Russia) is either described as a triumph of popular democracy or is not talked about.

St. Hubert Chapel / Hubertuskapelle - Valtice, Feldsberg, Moravia, Czech Republic - an angel

St. Hubert Chapel / Hubertuskapelle - Valtice, Feldsberg, Moravia, Czech Republic - an angel

The chapel is located within three kilometers from Feldsberg on the so called red tourist route or red hiking path. Most people would reach it on foot. You can get there also by a car or better still by a small 4×4 if you drive through forests and swamps (as I did it my 4×4 Fiat Panda – a large SUV will  attention, displeasure of the law enforcement personnel if they see you and hopefully swift punishment. Which might as well be deserved. All big SUV owners deserve to be shot or hanged or both.

If you intend to reach  the monument by a small car the deed is probably not legal but you can always pretend you got lost and claim that you ended up there by accident.

driving into forest clearing

driving into forest clearing

The chapel is  stunning (Americans today would say awesome) because most people don’t expect to see something like that smack in the middle of a forest.  I did not expect to see something like that in a forest.

On the other hand one should keep in mind that for the past few centuries this has not been  a real forest but a carefully preserved hunting estate which admittedly had the appearance of a wild forest.

When it was built the chapel was dedicated to Saint Hubert or St. Hubertus by Princes of Liechtenstein  and it was the shrine where grace  for a successful hunt would be said to thank the Saint Hubert and no doubt to the generous Almighty himself.  I find that whole notion slightly bizarre but that’s beside the point. In Austria, and this was once Austria, and I assume also in sections of Germany the idea of hunting is different from what it was and still is in Russia (or Finland or Norway or say Canada). The element of adventure is taken entirely out of the equation.

A few months ago I met a gregarious bunch of hunters, they were either from Upper Austria or from Salzburg as they amid a party were saying thanks to Saint Hubert at an inn in Falkenstein. The tavern, a remarkably nice one, was full of hunters. The joint is called Siebenschläfer, and it has a good selection of local wine (or British would say wines, in plural) and Belgian beer (though Austrian beer is, or the British would say beers are, outstanding). The public house is named after a mouse they eat as a delicacy in parts of Western and Southwestern Europe. Siebenschläfer translates as edible dormouse and apparently folks in Slovenia still feast on those mice (never saw it on the menus there though), the Italians used to roast mice and cook them on a spit or prepare them skewered, shish kebab style, alternating little rodents with piece of eggplant (that’s aubergine to the British), succulent cuts of summer squash (or marrow) and tomatoes  while the French tossed mice into boiling water and then devoured them as midnight snacks –  or something like that if we are to believe this article about those cute squirrel-like mice and their culinary relationship with the most civilized part of the mankind (I know you are supposed to say humanity instead of mankind, but humanity is something else and that’s why I won’t –   mankind’s  crimes against humanity is a fine sentence but  in the act of boiling mice the humanity is sorely lacking) .

It was bitterly cold outside though glowingly warm inside of the cavernous stone womb of the Dormouse /  Siebenschläfer tavern,  we began talking over delicious Falkenstein wine, Grüner Veltliner went neatly down first probably, my little Nikolai was playing with other kids, or rather with their parents at the same counter,  the  tables were pulled together in a communal fashion – this was a hunters’ party. It was good. As I interrogated talkative hunters about their venatic   exploits in the shadow of their patron saint,. St. Hubert, I discovered that their adventure was so prosaic that I would hardly call it an adventure. All those good natured folks had pricey uniform-like hunters clothing, camouflaged jackets,  and were armed with high powered expensive rifles of the kind Russian defense ministry is now buying (you have to read Russian or use translate.google.com to figure out what the story is about).  The hunt took place in a private forest (well I guess the owner of the forest put a restriction on what his game can be hunted with, otherwise hunters might have as well showed up with machine guns, flame throwers, and grenade launchers). Most forests in Austria are private – and that’s good. Forests need owners. Russian forests are officially a national property but in reality nobody’s, they are mismanaged and abused by corrupt and mutated Soviet bureaucracy for the benefit of bureaucracy itself and  Russia’s thieving classes. The owner of the forest permitted the hunting party to shoot one wild boar. That’s it.  So those twenty odd or thirty people obtained a permission to exterminate one swine. Big deal. Now each of them paid 100 euros (or was it 150 euros, either or, I remember it was an outrageous amount) for the privilege of murdering a pig. The owner of the forest (and of the pig that dwells in it, I guess he has more than one) got something like 2000 or 3000 euros for letting those armed people enter his forest. Then the platoon-sized well armed gang went into the woods, found a pig and executed him (or her if that were a sow, as I did not ask what was the gender of their porcine victim). They did not get to keep the meat of the creature because the contract covered just the murder of it though not its flesh, but as I recall the man who shot the piggie got  the boar’s head as a souvenir because the brave huntsmen and huntswomen (the platoon had a few Amazons  ) were toasting to the fellow whose steady rifle shot brought the wretched swine down.

Chapel of Saint Hubert (Hubertus, Hubertuskapelle) - angels  front view, near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

Chapel of Saint Hubert (Hubertus, Hubertuskapelle) - angels group, Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

A while back I met (an) American who joined the US military to kill darkies (he wanted to kill people, that’s why he said and that why he joined the infantry).  Wars waged around the globe by the Bush regime and its successor provide ample opportunities for this sort of fun in the poorer areas of the globe or even in some places that were recently affluent, like Libya, by which were reduced to poverty by American bombing, foreign invasion and imported warfare.  For  the sake of fairness it should be said that (obviously white) American also got paid for the “job” and he hoped that the taxpayer would also reimburse his tuition while my huntsmen – and huntswomen – paid, and in their case  paid a small fortune, for the dubious privilege of killing.

The Saint.
I am unsure whether rapists, child molesters, pedophiles and  murderers have their own heavenly protectors, but hunters do. Hunters got their own patron saint. He is Saint Hubert or Hubertus.

One can read about Hubertus orSt. Hubert in the Catholic Encyclopedia 

One note of coincidence – St. Hubert was a bishop of Liège (German Lüttich).

The city of Liège is located in what once were the Austrian Netherlands
but they became Belgium in the 19th century.

Here is the timeframe
Germany launched an unprovoked war of aggression against Russia on August 1, 1914.
On August 2, Germany invaded France – again without a reason or a hint of provocation.
On August 3, Germany attacked Belgium that was no threat to it.
One of the first battles of World War was the short siege of Liège which was still  longer than the Huns expected (they thought the city would fall within a day). The battle for Liège began on August 4 (Liège is right at the border) and the last fort surrendered, after having been reduced to rubble, on August 16.  Generally speaking the Belgian resistance allowed the heroic French to gain time and prevent the Bad Guys from winning the war.
Before the Germany launched its first 20th century war of aggression, Austria (or dual monarchy, Austria-Hungary) developed a special gun, a siege mortar, designed  for destruction of concrete fortifications and battering of cities that could be moved around on railroad. This was Škoda 30.5 cm Mörser M. 11 (M 11 standards for the model 1911 though it weapon was developed by 1909) and it was built by the Škoda works in Pilsen (Czech Plzeň,  it was to a large extent a German speaking town and an important industrial hub of the Austrian empire but like Southern Moravia  Pilsen was ethnically cleansed after 1945 and became fully Czech).  Austrians sent heavy 305.5 mortars to Germany together with own  crews, who wore German uniforms and manned the mortars. Those guns began the world war – by destroying forts of Liège and bombarding Antwerp and Namur.  German Nazis also used them in the Second World war against people of France and later Soviet Union, in the sieges of Sebastopol (Sevastopol) and Stalingrad but their carrier began in Belgium’s Wallonia.

The nasty part about is that Austria however was not at war with Belgium. It was at peace. Austria’s criminal ally, Germany,  forced the monarchy to declare war against Belgium only on 28 August 1914, that is almost two weeks after last fort of Liège, destroyed by Austrian siege mortars,  fell. That struck me as not exactly chivalrous.  Treacherous.  Sort of American 20th century style. Bad As bad as Austria’s treasonous neutrality in the Crimean War (another worthy subject to explore at a later time).

Here the  story of St. Hubert or Hubertus takes on many twists.
St. Hubert also happens to be the patron saint of arms makers. He was the bishop of Liège.  Liège, which Herstal neighborhood is home to  FN Fabrique Nationale,  is now the largest surviving firearms manufacturing center in Western Europe.
The guns that destroyed forts of Liege and killed its defenders and civilians were made in Pilsen.
As a result of the war which first battle was for the city where St. Hubert was bishop, Austria lost Pilsen along with the rest of the empire. In fact a new state, improbable and implausible before in 1917, that of Czechoslovakia was created and this Chapel of St. Hubertus happened to end on its territory (though on a private estate which was later stolen).

This  intertwining chain of coincidences is eerie.

Architecture

St. Hubertus Chapel - front view of  Hubertuskapelle - front view, near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

St. Hubertus Chapel - front view of Hubertuskapelle - front view, near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

The architect was Hans Heindrich (probably Johannes or Johann as Hans is just form of Christian Johannes) Heindrich who used earlier design by Georg Wingelmüller.  Hans Heindrich  was probably a household architect of Liechtensteins and I did not find any of his work outside of this immediate region. Georg Wingelmüller was another House of Liechteinstein architect. He rebuilt the castle at Eisgrub (Lednice) into a flamboyant neo-Gothic fantasy and  transformed old Renaissance structures into one of the world most spectacular palatial estates, no longer a castle in any sense.

Czechoslovak state (illegally) expropriated the Eisgrub castle after Second World War and the Czech state still keeps it.    The architecture of the castle or palace is majestic – though for some reason the Czechs stubbornly use the French word chateau in all of their English language pamphlets and tourist propaganda, but that’s a subject for another entry. I could never figure out why do they write chateau because the word and the context is so alien and it is certainly not a “chateau” in English.  The architecture of the palace or castle is magnificent but it is also somewhat artificial.

Like the  architecture of this chapel which also appears “imported”, alien.

Wingelmüller was born in 1810 and died young, in 1848. He left more architectural legacy than did dozens of ordinary architects who lived into their  80s or 90s.  At the tender age of 15, in the year 1825,  Liechtensteins sent young Georg to England to study architecture.  What he brought back was a spirit of (secretly Catholic, Norman and ultimately French) Gothic revival that just began to sprout in England and which later grew into such grandiose neo-Gothic fakes like the Houses of Parliament.  The  Parliament  building in Budapest is another obvious (magnificent) fake, one on steroids, and although I am unfamiliar with its history and it does look like a much newer structure,  I suspect it has similar roots and its creators drew inspiration from the same source.

When I saw the Chapel of St. Hubert (Hubertuskapelle) first I thought of a scaled down and resized Prince Albert Memorial in London, chubbier without the latter’s ridiculous spire.

Sculpture:

The sculpture of St. Hubert in the middle of the composition is the work of Anton Joseph Högler. Local guides  like the one created and maintained by Dieter Friedl , that’s just the Feldsberg part of it  – Believe me the thing is far more monumental than the Chapel of St. Hubert itself, in fact despite its modest appearance it is the size of a major Internet cathedral) attributes the authorship to  Joseph Högler. I went through the Austrian Biographical Lexicon (Österreichisches Biographisches Lexikon) and found no sculptor named Joseph Högler in it but fair enough there were two sculptors with last name Högler who lived almost around the time of Chapel creation.

St. Hubert or Hubertus at the Hubertuskapelle - front view, near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

St. Hubert or Hubertus at the Hubertuskapelle - front view, near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

These were Anton Högler (1774 – 1850) and Franz Högler (1802 – 1855). To make matters worse there  was also Anton Josef Högler ( 1705-1786) who was German, or rather Bavarian but worked in Austria (all Austrians except inhabitants of Voralberg are linguistic relatives of Bavarians, at least Anton Josef Högler found speech in Niederösterreich relatively easy as opposed to a Prussian to whom the local tongue sounded as alien as  Dutch). Anton Josef Högler was rather famous and he worked on decorating a number of churches besides painting and drawing and he left a substantial  legacy.
(http://www.arcadja.com/auctions/en/h%C3%B6gler_franz/artist/276591/). Unfortunately any search on Anton Högler would return results on Josef Anton instead.  I  faced a dead end. I remember my astonishment when I discovered the grave of Hilaire Belloc in Parisian Père Lachaise cemetery. To me Père Lachaise is one of the most holiest places on earth, the concentration of people whom I consider great there gives me goosebumps. Now although I speak English, and I happen to speak the American variety, I’ve never belonged to their cultural sphere. There are a few American writers that I like, some whom I worship, one great  still is still among us (and let him live to 120), Gore Vidal, and  who alas –  already dead Kurt Vonnegut is in my pantheon, but I would have a great difficulty gathering more than a dozen  Americans in one place who could inspire anyone save their fellow countrymen – yes, money lenders, thieves, speculators, mass murderers, victims of political assassinations, preachers. It would be difficult to put together an American equivalent of something that was 30 times smaller than the Père Lachaise.  Britain is a bit difficult of course. You can walk around London book in hand and look at the blue signs  – who was there and when – and then suddenly it comes like a jolt of electricy, oh he was here, and you ponder life’s meaning, stuff  mortality and immortality.   of London cemeteries are “outstanding” though beats Père Lachaise.  So it was like with Högler, I was walking through Père Lachaise and saw the grave of Hilaire Belloc. Now Belloc is one of my favorite poets, he is insightful and brave author. I translated his beautiful books of verse for children into Russian (The Bad Child’s Book of Beasts and equally outrageous More Beasts for Worse Children).  I worship Belloc – though of course there are some other 20th century English poets but I would place Belloc in the first top dozen. Read his beautiful Christmas carol that I put there right below quadriptych of a fish being massacred for the sacrificial Christmas dinner .   I was astonished to find Hilaire Belloc grave in Père Lachaise  – even he got here! But then how come, and  I paused – Hilare Belloc was buried in England. It took me a while to figure out (I am not a faster thinker) that this must be different Hilaire Belloc. Perhaps a relative. In fact it was. In that case this was thepainter  and founder of the École Nationale de dessin, sculpture et architecture Jean-Hilaire Belloc, who died four years before his great literary namesake was born.  Same with Joseph Högler?

St. Hubert Chapel - side view of  St Hubert - front view, near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

Chapel of Saint Hubert - side view of St Hubert sculptural composition - near Valtice, Feldsberg, and Lednice, Eisgrub, Moravia, Austria. now Czech Republic

Anton Josef Högler ( 1705-1786) was not a Joseph and worked almost a century before the sculpture was created.
Franz Högler (1802 – 1855) was not a Joseph because he was Franz, Francis, and he died the year the Chapel of St. Hubert was completed. He is a possible author of the sculpture but since the only source I have names some Joseph Högler, how can one be sure that Franz made it?
Anton Högler (1774 – 1850) is of course also a candidate, his second Christian name might have been Joseph but alas he also died four years before the construction of the Chapel.
Summary – certainly worth seeing if you are around, a landmark of otherwise landmark-rich (a UN heritage area) Feldsberg, Eisgrub and Nikolsburg or in Czech that would Valtice, Lednice and Mikulov triangle.

Photography
Camera:     Rollei SLX
Film:        Rollei RPX 100 (it looks like rebadged cold-stored Agfapan APX 100)
Developed in Rodinal

Path in the forest or woods near St. Hubert Chapel / Hubertuskapelle - Valtice, Feldsberg, Moravia, Czech Republic -

Path in the forest or woods near St. Hubert Chapel / Hubertuskapelle - Valtice, Feldsberg, Moravia, Czech Republic - once Austria (Austria-Hungary)

Film test: Свема ЦО-32д – Svema CO-32D from the year 1986

20 Nov

Color or Colour Reversal or Reversible Film

Svema CO-32D color reversible film from the old Soviet Union

Svema CO-32D color reversible film from the old Soviet Union

DIN 16 / ISO 32

Made in Russia (Soviet Union) by Svema

Estimated year of manufacture 1986

Expired 1990

Used in 2011

Camera used – Rollei SLX

Old Russian Svema CO-32D color reversible film that was manufactured per old prewar Agfacolor process

Old Russian Svema CO-32D color reversible film that was manufactured per old prewar Agfacolor process

ЦО-32Д or CO-32D
Nowadays would probably be transliterated into English by most people semi-phonetically in the as TsO-32D though it stands CO-32D right there on the box.

CO is an abbreviation that means (in Russian) Color Reversible (Film), 32 is the film’s speed according to GOST (which is same ASA or ISO) and the letter D at the end denotes in Russian (abbreviation) as it would in English D means here means  ” daylight”.

Old Russian Svema CO-32D color reversible film that was manufactured per old prewar Agfacolor process

Old Russian Svema CO-32D color reversible film that was manufactured per old prewar Agfacolor process

So basically it is color reversible daylight film, 32 ISO film. If the name were to be translated as opposed to being transliterated into English, then it would be CR-32D or CRF-32D.   Creativity in approach to naming products was not the Soviet’s strongest point.

The film was made in 1986. Because it expired in 1990 and the ЦО-32Д (TsO-32D) film was discontinued in  early 1987, I assume it could only be made in 1985.

Svema CO 32 d also known as TsO-32d / ЦО 32д

Svema CO 32 d also known as TsO-32d / ЦО 32д

The film was baked in some window because the colors faded quite a bit and was tossed around because the state of the packaging is far from pristine.  Also the film was not packed in an individual canister – either made plastic like in cheapo countries or in beautiful aluminum canisters that ORWO / Orwochrom films used to come in.  The roll of film was just wrapped in a piece of waxed foil-like paper, 1930s style.

sacrificial lambs - old Svema CO-32d /TsO-32d, Orwochrom UT-18 in two flavors and an Orwochrom UK-17

sacrificial lambs - old Svema CO-32d /TsO-32d, Orwochrom UT-18 in two flavors and an Orwochrom UK-17

I bought the film on Ebay though I don’t remember how much did I pay for.

The film is dead for the purposes of practical photography though was quite usable when it was new. That alone is amazing because if you were to read through numerous Russian photography forums the impression you would get is that Soviet color film was useless.

There are quite a few though not many examples of old photos from the Soviet Union taken on the Svema CO-32d film stock.  http://images.yandex.ru/yandsearch?text=%D0%A6%D0%9E-32%D0%B4

What is this film? It is original Agfacolor slide film from the year 1936 with improved dyes. Soviet CO-1 (ЦО-1) film was the real Agfacolor and I would like to get my hands on one of those, better on a batch.

I bought my CO-32d – six rolls I think – through Ebay from a place like Bulgaria.

The test

Svema CO-32d / Свема ЦО-32д - my fiats in Nikolsburg - Panda, Croma and Punto

Svema CO-32d / Свема ЦО-32д - my fiats in Nikolsburg - Panda, Croma and Punto

I used two rolls for test though sadly I killed one during development – I promise it won’t happen again. Instead of second developer I put the film into the bleach. Amazingly the image did not disappear in an instant but during fixing stage the pictures were gone. There is perhaps a way to restore them, pull them out of there, chemically and that will be another, a different project altogether.

Exposure – I exposed originally ISO 32 film as ISO 12 which was apparently not enough. Now I think that ISO 6 would have been more appropriate.

Loading the developing tank. When I was loading the film into the tank I discovered that the backing paper grew into the film. It merged with it. The place where the film was stored all those years (shop window?) must have been pretty hot for the film and the backing paper to bake together. I had to wash the backing paper off the film.  Not everything came out.

Svema CO-32d / Свема ЦО-32д - a Panda in yellow
Svema CO-32d / Свема ЦО-32д – a Panda in yellow

Developing. I mixed all chemicals myself according to the ORWO 9165C procedure which is used for Orwochrom (Orwochrome) processing except three major or minor elements.

The first or the so-called black and white developer.  Soviet GOST (Svema and Tasma color reversible films) prescribes first developer with Amidol. This was probably the original Agfacolor developer. Because I haven’t found Amidol so far I had to skip that and replace the chemical with something else. Now the  ORWO 9165C process asks for a combination of phenidone and hydroquinone – I did not find phenidone either. Instead I used a developer from Bohemian Foma cookbook, originally Agfacolor 67 prescribed for Fomachrom film stock.

Here is the “recipe”

Metol     3,0 g

Sodium sulfate, dehydrated   50.0 g

Hydroquinone    6,0 g

Sodium carbonate (CAS 497-19-8)   40,0 g (I used baking soda)

Potassium thiocyanate (CAS No: 333-20-0)    2 g

Potassium bromide (CAS 7758-02-3).     2    g

Potassium Iodide (CAS No.7681-11-0(  0.1% solution   6    ml

I skipped the potassium iodide part for the reason that I don’t have it either.

At the edge of a forest between Stützenhofen and Poysbrunn, Weinviertel, Lower Austria

At the edge of a forest between Stützenhofen and Poysbrunn, Weinviertel, Lower Austria

That means that developed the Russian Svema CO-32d according to German ORWO reversible film process but for the first developer used one from Czech Foma (stolen Agfacolor) without one ingredient.  Potassium iodide is a fogging reducing agent and could be replaced with a pinch of benzotriazole but I did not bother.

The second short cut the was stop bath which I made from regular vinegar and tap water as opposed to a mixure of 99%  ethanoic acid, sodium acetate and water.  Vinegar and water dressing works as well.

Besides these two the entire process was more or less according to the sacred book of Orwo.

I developed five rolls of film altogether (two Svema CO-32d and three test rolls of ORWO reversible films – an ancient Orwochrom UT-18, an even more ancient ORWO UT-18 and an Orwochrom UK-17  (test reports are coming later).

A hint on developing Orwochrom, Fomachrom,  Soviet / Russian Tasma and Svema CO films as well as similar oddities that I never encountered but would love to get my hands on like Sakurachrome, Ferraniachrome, Revuechrome, Anscochrome, which all use Hitlerite Agfacolor technology.  I will develop those films in batches of 10 because 1 liter is the minimum quantity of ready chemical solutions I would make or I can weigh and pre-mix chemicals at the price or rather cost of about 15 euros plus shipping for 1 liter solution mix that would include everything except stop bath (get your vinegar at a local grocery store).  I would develop 1  roll of such film free of charge but you’d have to wait until there is a batch ready – I’d reckon the next Orwochrom-Agfacolor cookout will take place in about three months time.

“Raw” chemicals. I bought mine from the good people at the Calbe Chemie (http://www.calbe-chemie.de) in Germany which also used to make ORWO processing kits. Their minimum quantity is normally 1 kilo of stuff which is obviously a lot unless you plan on testing and developing Agfacolor-like films like I do.

A panda at the end of a long road

A panda at the end of a long road

The summary here though not quite yet the verdict.  When it was fresh the Svema CO-32d like the ORWO UT and UK products was a forgiving, usable film that had soft watercolor sort of quality. If one is fortunate enough to get hold of a refrigerated or at least unbaked batch today then he or she will come into a possession of a veritable treasure – Svema CO films produce is capable of producing unusual painterly effects and is easy to handle and process.