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A building from Chișinău was declared “the ugliest building in the world”
The “Romanița” building in the center of the Moldovan capital has been named by the French journalists as “the ugliest building in the world” in a documentary produced by Arte TV. The film is part of a French project that talks about socialist buildings, which are now abandoned.
This disappointed the artist from Moldova Tatiana Fiodorova, who appears as the protagonist in the documentary film and afterwards filed a complaint against the French channel Arte.TV. “The documentary is more like an anti-communist horror movie than a research film. They cut and pasted the sequences in such a way that it changed the meaning of the words I said during the interview,” claimed the artist. Shortly after, Arte.TV renamed the documentary to “Moldova: The Colossal Communist Tower”.
The “Romanița” building has a height of about 73 meters, being the second tallest building in Chișinău. It has 22 floors, out of which 16 are inhabited by over 300 residents. A few years ago, this building attracted the attention of a team of Polish designers who made a selection of constructions from Eastern European countries that deserve attention, and which in time would degrade if no one intervenes.
In 2009, “Romanița” inspired Tatiana Fiodorova to realise an art project where she presented the uniqueness of this construction and the need to keep it. In this regard, she was contacted by several French journalists from Arte.TV who proposed to talk about the project and about the history of this building. “The filming for the documentary took 2 days. I talked about the project and how we collaborated with the locals, to give this building a new chance. The film’s producers asked me to invite some locals I told about. Some of them accepted. Now, the meaning of their message was transformed into a political one, although during the filming there was no ideological context, ” argued the artist.
Lost in Moldova – a miniseries from and about Moldova supported through a crowdfunding campaign
Lost in Moldova is a short drama series created by John Lewis and directed by Calin Laur that tells the story of a young man called Diego. He joins the Peace Corps to win back his ex-girlfriend and gets to Moldova. He imagines exotic, tropical places, instead he ends up “Lost in Moldova.”
The movie will feature the cultural aspects specific to an Eastern European country, its creators hoping to build “a bond between the people of Moldova and Americans through laughter and their shared humanity” according to the description of the movie.
The first season of Lost in Moldova revolves around Diego (played by Kenny Grimble Jr.) teaching English at a school in a small Moldovan village, the characters he meets, and his adjustment to life in Moldova. In the movie, the protagonist has to undergo a transformation through a series of adventures that changed his assumptions about the world, especially about Moldova.
The crowdfunding campaign
The funds needed for production crew, equipment, travel, permits, insurance, editing, etc. were raised through a crowdfunding campaign, the team planning to re-shoot the pilot episode, along with 3 additional episodes from the first season.
Up till now, $14 175 were raised, the campaign ended successfully and the pre-production phase of the project started. The supporters of this campaign had the opportunity to receive a wide variety of perks: exclusive access to finished episodes (for a donation of minimum $50), a digital signed copy of the pilot script (for a donation of at least $75), a “Thank You” in the credits (for $250 or more), upgrading the name of the grantor to associate producer (for a donation of $1 000) or even to executive producer (for a donation of $2 500) in the credits.
According to its authors, the project will make a big impact in creating awareness about Moldova, transforming the image of Moldova in the eyes of people around the world.
Along with shooting the episodes of the first season, parallel content will be developed using new characters. The glimpse of ‘behind the scenes’ are planned to be shared on the Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels.
The crowdfunding video for the Lost in Moldova series:
5 family-owned wineries and their internationally awarded wines that could offer exclusive experience
People who already had a chance to visit Moldova surely visited at least one of the most famous wineries of the country: Cricova, Purcari, Chateau Vartely, Mileștii Mici, Asconi or maybe Castel Mimi. Beside big and popular wineries, which produce a wide range of wines for import and export, there are also small, family-owned vineyards attached to wisely engineered wineries that deliver unique products, beloved and awarded internationally, and that are even more interesting to be discovered. So prepare a notebook and take some notes.
The Fautor winery, belonging to Lipcan family, was founded at the end of the 20th century. The winemaker’s talent, advanced technologies, the unique area where the vineyards grow and the variety of produced wines are the main ingredients of the Fautor success story.
Both the winery and the plantations are located in the Tigheci microzone, being part of the Valul lui Traian area – a UNESCO protected wine-growing area in Southern Moldova where protected geographical indication (PGI) wines are obtained. The experts claim that this region’s environment is similar to those of the famous wine regions Bordeaux (France) and Piedmont (Italy).
Fautor is one of the most awarded Moldovan wineries in the last years, having a unique portfolio of rare varieties and world exclusive blends, as the official page of the company states. The wine catalogue of Fautor includes a beautiful selection of wines, including their most internationally awarded varieties: Negre – a blend of Feteasca Neagra and Rara Neagra (red dry wine), Fumé Blanc – made of Sauvignion Blanc grape variety (white dry wine) and Illustro – a blend of Cabernet Sauvignion and Merlot (red dry wine).
Vinaria din Vale
Vinaria din Vale is one more family-owned winery (Davidești family) with deep roots in tradition and a great passion for excellence. It is another winery located in the Valul lui Traian area, the vineyards there having a favorable climate and fertile soils that ensure the personality and quality of grapes.
Another important detail in their wine production is the maturation in oak barrels brought from France that offer soft taste and stunning aromas. The most appreciated wines of Vinaria din Vale are Traminer, Feteasca Neagră (red dry wine), Rosé and their blend of Chardonnay and Fetească Albă (white dry wine).
Gitana winery is special because of its elegant wines that managed to preserve the personal identity of each variety of grapes in their flavor and structure, without much human intervention. Thanks to the winery owners’ (Dulgher family) know-how and the specific of the region (Valul lui Traian) where the vineyards are located, Gitana was internationally recognised and won over time many awards in the specialised competitions. The most honoured with awards wines from Gitana are their Cabernet Sauvignon and Feteasca Regală varieties.
This winery marked a milestone in the rebirth of Moldovan wines when the Dulgher family purchased the “Tiganca” (tr. gipsy) wine factory in a deplorable state in 1999 and gave it a new life.
The family-owned winery Novak is a new look at the traditional wine-making, combining traditions and innovative technologies. As the majority of the described wineries, it is also located in the Valul lui Traian microzone.
The story of Novak winemaking dates back to the late 19th, being started by Emanuel Novak. Afterwards, the knowledge was transferred to his successors. The old-fashioned traditions served as a base for the today’s winery. At Novak winery both classic varieties (Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Malbec), traditional varieties (Rara Neagra, Feteasca Regala) and even some forgotten varieties of grapes (Alb de Onitcani, Floricica, Kaz Aya) are used in production. In such a way, in addition to the already well-known varieties of wines and blends, the Novak winery placed emphasis on the revival of the original Moldovan varieties, some of which, until recently, were forgotten or considered lost. The Alb de Onițcani wine variety, for example, won the gold medal at Mundus Vini 2018 and other international contests.
There are even more family-owned, worth mentioning wineries in Moldova, such as Gogu winery, Atu winery, Et cetera, Equinox, Kara Gani. They produce rich-flavoured wines and offer an unforgettable experience to their customers. Therefore, more is yet to come.
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