time and space

March 14, 2016 § 2 Comments

Great things are done by a series of small things brought together. – Vincent Van Gogh

It’s mid-morning Monday, I am still thinking of the inspiring words and creative stories from Saturday’s U Symposium discussion panel. The community of speakers from various well-established magazines gave so many enriching advices for us to challenge ourselves and look at the bigger picture.


In this day and age, Independent Magazine is a new-found territory. Not that there hasn’t been any independently published magazines before, but the competition is much more prevailing and people are gradually changing their perspectives. To start, Kai from Offscreen mentioned we have the internet; a big open community filled with information for us to immerse ourselves. It’s fast, easily available and so effective (especially when it comes to hot-gossips). We evolved into having high-speed internet and absorbing quick data that we have forgotten how it feels like to pick up a book/magazine/newspaper.

Hard copies have soft copies edition. Newspapers turned digitalized. People have online profiles. Our identities are constructed onto websites with personal information that everyone else needs to know. We connect so much faster than before, but yet there is a deep sense of regression.

Did we forget how to interact offline? Text over calling? Do we not realize that print is going out of business because we don’t read from hard copies anymore? Instead of telling ourselves that we are saving the earth by going paperless, we are contributing to a bigger carbon footprint movement by draining our batteries so quickly that we constantly need to charge it, even when it is not half-full?

So where/when do we draw the line? Where do we start? How do we pace ourselves to find balance between staying updated and slowing it down?

I find it most difficult to be constantly chasing the bright spotlight. To be at the top or follow trends. The next rainbow bagel or latte art pen. Un-necessities. If we could do without them before, why do we need it now? Certainly down the road we got bored with what we had and soon, tried to compete with the other. So we add something extra to be better. What if we didn’t need that something extra to be better, but to work on what we have and stay authentic. Perhaps then we will have a larger chance to be sustainable in the long run instead of feeding a temporary hunger. Then only to realized it was a hasty decision after it is said and done?

We are going backwards, that is for sure. Embracing crafted handmade goods, taking pride in artisanal products and spending more time in nature. But it does not mean we are degenerating. Taking it slower, embracing time and space or the present moment, allows us to accept life wholeheartedly.

Grab a piece of good read, embrace the contents fully and connect the dots with how we are seemingly interconnected in many ways. Whether it is an offline interview, recipe from female cooks, a long passage about a far away land or just beautiful landscape images of a place set in a particular time; it brought everyone to a room on Saturday/Sunday afternoon. A community, which redefines the way we indulge in literature by being transparent and sincere with their voices.


Later that evening, I had the pleasure of watching NOMA and got intimately acquainted with René Redzepi’s journey (along with a hundred over viewers). He feels strongly about capturing time and space. The current moment, seasons; the wide space, nature (ingredients). He focuses on foraging for fresh produce, meeting local farmers, staying fiercely loyal to his family and taking care of his crew. How does one have time or the capacity to find such equilibrium in life?

It is not a bed of roses. It is hard work. It is also important to know that you can’t figure everything out at once. It just comes and goes, like tide. The best waves are those you decide which one to ride on.

What I love about René Redzepi is that NOMA isn’t his, it is also his crew. They took pride and ownership in the work they do. They got hurt and had fun. He made mistakes, he is human, like we all are ; and at the very least it’s honest. The cinematography is enthralling. Pierre Deschamps, did a beautiful job in capturing the whole essence of the chef’s life. Allowing us to feel the sensations of his every action or thought through slow motion and fine music, brought together a certain closeness/understanding.

Perhaps Claudia Wu, the editor of Cherry Bombe, described us is true: “when we were all living on the plains of Serengeti, it was better to hunt and gather in groups- it’s basically the same now”.

We really should learn to live by creating a sense of community with our five senses; whether its magazines, pottery, music or food; it should bring warmth and a sense of belonging. After all, we all look at the same sky.

Our boss decided to spoil us with a big pot of eggplant, homemade tomato sauce pasta with mozzarella and fresh basil. Staff lunches can’t get any better than this!

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§ 2 Responses to time and space

  • Anna says:

    Thank your sharing! It is interesting!

  • Rally says:

    Dear Denise, I enjoyed reading this post a lot, contemplating the essence of what you are saying, re connecting to a space and time more real and simpler, together is what would bring out the best in us all! Hope to visit you again when we are in the same space again 🙂

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