florentine

Crumbling Bauhaus style building, Florentine neighbourhood, South Tel Aviv. Lots of these buildings have been renovated – since Tel Aviv’s Bauhaus south is a UNESCO heritage site you can get a grant.

Florentine is many things at once. It’s a mass of contradictions. It’s old. It’s young. It’s the coolest place in Tel Aviv. It’s passe already. It’s residential. It’s industrial. It’s working class. It’s full of yuppies.  It’s noisy. It’s quiet.  (No, it’s not – it’s noisy all the time.

Opposite this crumbling house (which is also bargainous real estate, as prices are rising fast)  is a new, fancy apartment block  with a restaurant-coffee shop-bar-venue. There are also designer boutiques, two pet stores, two hummus places,  two sushi places,  long-established but trendy bars that are also restaurants by day, an ancient and grumpy barber, a Chabad centre, rival pastry shops, art galleries, grimy kiosks, an award winning ice cream shop, juice bars, a shop that resembles a flea market, a place selling 1950’s women’s vintage unworn underwear, and some random workshops.

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17 comments on “florentine”

  1. One of the best places in Israel (in my opinion) for street photography. Even better than Neve Zedek.
    I smiled a bit at those rabbit ears at the top of the building. Somehow it even makes sense if those were rabbit ears – You should be ready for everything while walking through Florentine.

    • Ilan – I walked through Neve Zedek with my camera a couple of weeks ago and it was so FULL of people with cameras that it was actually funny. At a coffee shop on Lilenblum there was a whole table of people with Holgas. :) Florentine is full of photo opportunities, although it’s edgier in parts.

  2. sounds fascinating and i hope you’re going to show more (i want to see the grumpy barber!): this is a fine shot.

    • david, thanks – the grumpy barber was so grumpy he refused to be photographed :) But I got a picture of his shop, which I might post.

  3. It looks like a place where life spills onto the street and there is no strong demarcation between the two. Along with all the color one can imagine the noise to go with it though it is difficult to imagine a new apt. building right across from it. The phrase “local color” seems so apt for this image.

    • thanks, daina – and yes, life does spill onto the street, sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s bad. there are lots of new apartment blocks here as the area is being renovated, and as parts are still rather slum-like it’s a good thing.

  4. Bel effet troublé pour cette façade de rue ! J’aime beaucoup !

  5. Without having seen it in real life..I’m already loving this Florentine neighborhood. The way you’ve described its eclecticism..and how you’ve captured this crumbling piece of modernist architecture make it look and sound like a wonderful and fascinating place to be. The hanging laundry and ancient rabbit’s ears really make the image!!!

    • Thanks, Marcie – it’s actually at the middle of a very Israeli controversy because City Hall plans to renovate the area – parts are still a dump and there’s lots of wasted space – but some residents are against it. I’m in favour of it…

  6. Great image, I like to see pictorial documents from other places, places that I most likely will never see in person. And I enjoy looking at this, with colorful laundry drying against the sun dried wall. In regards tot he rabbit ears, if I looking at the right place, they look more like a satellite dish to me… :)

  7. Fascinating. Your photos and words are a powerful evocation of a place I’ve never seen (have to admit the unused 50s underwear bit was an eye-opener!) but can get a better sense of. Thanks for sharing.

    • The 50’s underwear as an eye-opener for me, too – it’s a retro shop. I’m glad this is your reaction, GJC, because I want people to see bits of the “real” Israel – all the weird and wonderful and ordinary.

  8. This neighborhood sounds lovely.

    Much, way, better than a shopping mall with much the same offer but none of the delight.

  9. an amazing picture, and a great description! i would love to experience it for myself, although i think i would experience sensory overload quickly.

  10. belle façade colorée à l'”italienne”..


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