What is it that makes Graça so special?
Just returned from Denmark where we have spend 9 days with friends. The occasion was best friends 25 years wedding anniversary party. One of those parties where you meet people you haven’t seen since our friends last big party 5 years before – but not one of those parties where it takes a while, a lot of small talk and a few drinks to break the ice. Not at all!
At most parties like these you are always met with the same questions: Whats up, where are you now, how’s life etc. This time was different. Very easy, very relaxed a lot of laughter and a lot of catching up… we all behaved like we’re back at the party we left 5 years before.
With all our blogging, our life is not private. So most people at this party already knew about our beings and doings since last time we met. But it wasn’t Kathmandu and The Earthquake they we’re curious about – thanks God for that 🙂
This was one of the first question I got from my dinner partner.
Not the first time someone has asked me about that. All media around the world have had features about Lisbon the last 2 years where the city has been the new travel destination. So it was easy to answer – and easy to pimp up with the most interesting experiences and stories from our personally life here.
This was the the next question I got after explaining where Graça is. And a more challenging one.
Of course its easy to list all the facts: Its proximity to down town, the view points, the restaurants, the absence of mass tourists etc. But when we used the ‘soft’ characteristics like Graça’s special ambiance and the feel things got more complicated. Especially when we have to do it in words.
The thing is – Graça is special because of artists, poets, thinkers, bohemians and lost souls that have lived, worked or performed here for generations. And still do.
We are surrounded by their works and spirits: On the walls, in words, in the architecture, music, food etc. But you can’t point a finger on a piece at say: This is whats makes Graça so special…
Its a sum of it all that makes the difference. You can feel its presence – you can feel the thinkers, feel the bohemians spirits, feel the poetry and the music. And this feeling doesn’t have words.
But thanks to all our spontaneous mobile photos and to Google photo for making it easy for us to organize everything its now possible to show some of the things that spice up our daily life here in Graça.
BUT the only way to understand what we mean is to come and stay here for a while.
Hazul Luzah – generously shares his unique art in our hood.
If you stay in Graça – permanently or on a holiday – try count the number of works by Hazul Luzah.
Hazul Luzah is an artist whose work predominates on the streets of Porto, Portugal’s second city after Lisbon. He’s a self-taught graffiti writer, who has developed a style blending classic lettering, transformed into undecipherable, decorative calligraphic forms often mixed with imagery from nature.
He describes his work as a “step-by-step” process, always building on his last work.
While writing this story we found the interview in Under-Ground Paris where we can see Hazul lives in Porto.
We don’t know him – or why he has so many works in and around Graça. But we’re looking forward to follow his art. And if he reads this and visits Graca we hope she will have time for a coffee.
Annette & Thomas