A Meaningless JuxtapositionFriday, March 11, 2011
If the two images were to someday make it to a gallery in a retrospective of a dead Vancouver photographer who was too commercial to be considered an artist and too artistic to be considered a good commercial photographer, some idiot critic would write stuff on the similarities of the juxtapositions. He or she might see in one of the images the budding of the photographer’s interest in portraying despair. This would culminate in images taken in 2003 of a woman who plays the part of the young girl who faced Degas and who, as she grew up, was pushed into prostitution by her mother. She may have lived a life that ended in despair.
And of course the idiot critic would be writing a load of unadulterated male ungulate of the Aberdeen variety.
In my youth I, like many of the generation that owned Practicas, Pentacons, Edixas and early Pentaxes (and all too poor to even think of buying a Leica or a Contax) walked the streets snapping pictures that attracted our fancy. In my case I was lucky enough to be in Mexico City or Veracruz and Buenos Aires and not Dubuque, Iowa. Even then I knew that my location was somewhat off the beaten path. It was a world not yet flickrd or facebooked. It was not a world in which any of the pictures we took ever did find a wall for viewing. Perhaps a few did, but then some of us were lucky.
I chose to take the pictures I took because I saw in them some sort of tidy graphic order. It was an order of verticals and horizontals that somehow framed the roundness of the human figures that the verticals and horizontals framed. There was no thought of expressing existentialism and human alienation in any of these shots. They were simply snaps that I took for fun.
The similarities of the two pictures sandwiched into apparent meaningfulness by Photoshop is purely accidental.
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Fred Herzog- Reading Pictures
On Photography -Susan Sontag's Ecology of Images
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