The 44th edition of The Cats Festival was an impressive spectacle. Ypres created a celebration out of tossing cats to their death from a bell tower. A practice that dates from the Middle Ages when Ypres propspered as a center of clothmaking.
The city’s warehouses would fill with bales of imported wool waiting to be woven, and bolts of finished cloth waiting to be sold at an annual fair. The warehouses drew mice and rats, which would nest and breed prolifically in an environment like that. To keep the vermin from chewing up the goods, the story goes, merchants would bring in a few hungry cats to hunt them. But the hunters would multiply, too, and by the time of the fair each spring, the place would be overrun with feral cats creating a nuisance of their own. In those crueler times, hurling cats from a great height was apparently seen in Ypres as both a practical solution and a source of gruesome entertainment. They don’t throw live cats in Ypres any more, of course; that stopped in 1817. In 1930 the city brought back the old throwing tradition in a harmless way using stuffed toys and confetti – Ypres, Belgium
Vignette of the 44th edition of The Cats Festival. This year’s festival was crowded by Japanese tourists, aparently they love cats! – Ypres, Belgium.
Vignette of the 44th edition of The Cats Festival. Two women waiting for the Cat Parade to start – Ypres, Belgium.
Harry Gruyaert is together with Bieke Depoortere, Carl De Keyzer and Martine Franck one of the four Belgian members of the renowned photography agency Magnum and one of my favourite photographers. A broad overview of his work is at display at the FOMU Antwerp. Definately worthwhile a visit! - Antwerp, Belgium
One more from the Zwolle series. Reflections are wonderful things; they’re visual metaphors of something that might or might not be there in reality – Zwolle, The Netherlands.
People from Zwolle say they know they're home when they see the Onze Lieve Vrouwentoren (also known as the Peppermill), the huge former church that dominates the skyline - Zwolle, The Netherlands
Zwolle is the capital of Overijssel. In the 14th and 15th centuries Zwolle garnered wealth as the main trading port for the Hanseatic League and became a cultural centre of some repute. While those days are long gone, you can still step back in time, courtesy of the moat and ancient fortifications that surround the town - Zwolle, The Netherlands
Sugar was long Cuba’s most important industry and export but today it ranks behind sectors such as tourism, tobacco, nickel and pharmaceuticals – Trinidad, Cuba
"Photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place. It has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with how you see them."
I just like to take pictures, I just push the button. I never worked in the darkroom, I never studied photography or journalism; I’m just a passionate photographer.
"Success is the ability to go from failure to failure, without a loss of enthusiasm”
Sir Winston Churchill
Therefore, I Am A Believer Of "All Critiques Are Valid". Thank You!