Power of Beauty

What exactly is beauty? Did you ever wonder? How often did you discard something because at first sight you find it not attractive?

I wondered about this when I was doing a guided tour in the Palacio Barolo in Buenos Aires. This is a magnificent building with an even more magnificent view. The only way to enter it is with a guide, so I have toured the place a couple of times now. The inside I already know quite well, but I just can’t get enough of the spectacular views on every side! It is even worth hearing the whole history of the building in 2 languages over and over again.

Now as a photographer I am not just satisfied with ‘a view’. I also need good light and -preferably- clouds (there I go again!). In the case of Palacio Barolo this is a hard thing to come by. Why is that so?

First of all, you need a reservation to a specific tour, and pay in advance, send a proof of payment by email which is later confirmed (not automatically). So what I basically do is book a tour for the next day, after checking when the golden hour starts and when the sun sets (the best light), and checking the weather forecasts for clouds and upcoming storms. But forecasts in Argentina suck even more than they do in Belgium.

Then there is another caveat. If it is raining or rain is announced, all outdoor activities are canceled, and the terraces are closed. So I need to book around sunset, when it is cloudy, about to storm, but it can’t have started yet or the threat can’t be too big or realistic. Let’s say I need chance on my side!

This time I had not many options. I wanted to show this place to my mom who was visiting, and there were no clouds announced during her stay…I had to settle for the sunset.

During the tour you slowly go up in the building, and in the ‘museum’, you get a first view on the buildings across the road. For some reason I had not noticed that before, and I wondered how that is possible. While I thought “Waw! What a view! I need to get on that balcony!”, I overheard an American exclaim that the view is just horrible, with those ugly buildings in front, on which his companion agreed. They made it sound as if the whole visit of the building was ruined.

The photo on top of this post is that -now what is it, beautiful or ugly?- view on the buildings across the street.

Beauty is definitely subjective! What do you think? Let me know in the comments below!

After visiting the museum the tour goes up in the building where the views only gets better…

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