Erasmus photo contest: from Umeå to Sibiu

Many students from Halle’s university travel to various destinations around the world for their semesters abroad. A large percentage of the trips are organised by the Erasmus programme. As part of the 2013 International Week, the International Office at MLU put on its fourth annual photo contest. All of the winners’ photos were displayed in the Juridicum cafeteria. Some of the best photos can also be found in the annual magazine.

Autumn Lights Festival (Foto: Susanne Kaufmann)Autumn Lights Festival (photo: Susanne Kaufmann)

Autumn Lights Festival (photo: Susanne Kaufmann)

Susanne Kaufmann, sociology, studied at the University of Umeå in Sweden as part of her Erasmus stay and won first place with her photo Autumn Lights Festival: “I was particularly fascinated by the colourful circles of candles which were visible from far away. They are empty canning jars lovingly adorned with colourful scraps of tissue paper. The dark time of the year is made a little friendlier and warmer which is why it is of major importance in the north and is typically Swedish. Umeå is known for its many festivals including the Autumn Lights Festival. Artists gather every year in the far north to illuminate the gloomy and shorter autumn days.”

Nadja Remus, Romance studies, did her semester abroad at Universidad de Sevilla, Spain. During an excursion to the Moroccan city of Chefchaouen she took this fascinating photo of a sleeping cat which won her second place: “Imagine you are walking through the narrow streets of a city. You go uphill, you go downhill. Sometimes the street is narrower, sometimes many people can pass one another. Traders are standing in front of their small shops entreating you to go in to admire and buy their wares. The children chase one another and use the many building corners as hiding places. The scent of hot, Moroccan mint wafts from a café. The special thing about these alleyways is the colour blue. Not only are the buildings blue, the path is as well, which leads to a dead end. Even though the sun beats down, the medina is teeming with people. A small cat has found a cosy place atop a grain sack and is enjoying her cat nap until dusk when she’ll be off on another mouse hunt.”

Tina Fuhrmann, physics, had a look around the Universitatead in Bucharest, Rumania. She received third place with her photo “Alone in Sibiu”: “Tiny streets, colourful buildings, a sleepy town….Isn’t it familiar somehow? The narrow streets in Sibiu are reminiscent of historic German towns. Those that are well-preserved are now listed monuments in many places. Their appearance reflects reality in Sibiu because there is little money for renovation or restoration. The town is located in Transylvania and was inhabited almost solely by Germans well into the last century. Their influence is still reflected in the townscape.”

Susann Kleemann, law, experienced “a different kind of Christmas” during her Erasmus stay at Universidad Publica de Navarra in Spain: “Every year on the evening of 5 January the three magi parade through Pamplona and give presents to children. They are accompanied by torchbearers, fire-breathers, dancers and pages.”

Susanne Kaufmann, who took the winning photo, watched an elk in Sweden: “Through the Buddy Programme at the University of Umeå I was able to visit an elk farm and observe the symbolic animal of Sweden up close and personal. This elk was peacefully enjoying the last warming rays of the sun away from the hustle and bustle before winter finally set in.”

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