i had enough of the beauty

I am full of illusion, honestly. it might sound sad but actually, as Woody Allen says: "Life is short, lonely, violent, and full of problems. The only solution is to create illusions."
I agree, actually, because now, that I am coming to an age where all my childhood and young-soul-illusions are bursting, I am starting to see the loneliness, the violence, and the problems as something making life cold and dull.
I much prefer the illusions.
My illusions are created by pictures.
AS a very young child, when my parents read me books, I would create vivid and lively pictures. I can still remember them today.
When I read books (which i did to a great extent- a real nerd) I created whole worlds of universes of realities, inside my head. And they were so beautiful, mystical, and magical, these worlds.
My vivid imagination made me live in a magical world, all the time, where everything was possible.
The last few years, it existed a lot in films. Films such as Paris, Amelie, Malena, Frida, Stealing Beauty, Vicky Christina Barcelona, to name a few. Beautiful stories in beautiful surroundings. Drama, art, beauty, passion, love. In a backdrop of lavender fields, a romantic, sepia-coloured city, or silent Tuscan star-filled nights.
I lost myself inside the films, I travelled into them, I lived there, in that beauty.
Before moving to Barcelona, I watched Vicky Christina Barcelona quite a few times (I am embarrassed to say the exact number)
The city seemed so ... well ... pretty, exciting, mystical, magical, warm, inviting...
And in the beginning, I was really excited to see some of these magical visions from the pictures from the film. But once I had seen them all, I started feeling dissappointed.
And a few days ago, after having lived in Barcelona for exactly five months, I decided to watch the movie again, which I shouldn't have done. Because I realised that Mr Allen had done exactly that; he had created an illusion for me.
I was criticising most of the Barcelona-scenes in the film with another type of knowledge than I had before- I saw the reality behind the staged illusion and I knew how it ACTUALLY is.
The thing is though, with film and photography, that it is a subjective interpretatuon by the artist, to choose to show that which he wants to show. Beautiful, or ugly.
Or... Biutiful???
So the movie Biutiful, with the same guy in the lead character, Javier Bardem, shows another side of Barcelona. Before I came here, I remembered seeing both films just after each other, philosophizing about the yin and the yang of this city, how interesting it is that Barcelona has this incredibly beautiful front, and this incredibly dark and ugly underworld. And how this is exactly what I am looking to discover, especially with photography and writing- and my imagination, my illusions, would have plently of stuff for its fire to keep on being fanned.
So after re-watching Vicky Christina Barcelona and being highly dissappointed- in fact, feeling as if I had been inside a shiny bubble that had now bursted all over me and I was soaked in smelly chemicals- I thought about Biutiful.
During the university lecture that same evening, the photojournalist Xavier Cervera showed us one of his works, which was a portrait of a man living in the same area where Biutiful was filmed, with circumstances as similar as possible to the ones of Javier Bardem's role character int he movie. I then found out that the movie had been filmed in Santa Coloma and Badalona, and I decided that I must go there to see it with my own eyes.
I took the metro to Santa Coloma and started walking around with my camera. In search of huge groups of Chinese immigrants and African refugees, I was a bit surprised (or..dissappointed..) to see so many "regular" Catalan people. I also saw a part of a cty that could be, actually, in any part of Europe. Not the city centre, not historical, not special- but not like devastatingly poor, ghetto-like, or anything like it. I tried to go into the areas of high-rise buildings- but it just seemed dead, quiet, shut.
People didn't really react to me- well, some looked curiosly at me- but I never felt as if anyone was thinking "what's this stupid guiri doing here". Not once. And that was kind of what I was looking for, as this is kind of my thrill, to go to the places where I'm not supposed to be. (like the slums of Bombay, the backstreets of the Dhaka port, too close to military in Burma and in Muslim separatist Aceh during the war)
So again, dissappointment, and bubbles bursting. I had expected misery, pain, poetical suffering.. But everyting looked quite fine, normal, and pretty happy to me.
Ugly at times, but people doing what people do, all over the world. Having a beer, shopping, drinking coffee, buying vegetables.
But I might have just not even begun to scratch the surface herre, I realise. To get to the "real" thing, I might have to spend another five months to be able to see it.

But I just realised something. If I didn't have this "searching" personality, I could have just left it alone. I could have left the mystery alone and just left it at its magically distant position within the four corners of the screen, and within the bubble of my imagination. My problem is that I want it, I wanna get inside that bubble, and live there, huddled in my tree-house, playing with my magical items.
I'm just a little child, actually.
Dissappointed that Santa Claus doesn't exist.


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