An Innocuous Blog Featuring That Winged Dinosaur
Saturday, July 20, 2013
I have written about this rose a couple of times here
This time around I tried something new. I cut a section of the rose which is growing so fast and nasty that I have to keep pruning it. It is encroaching to the winding path in my garden and you do not want to run into its nasty barbs. I inserted the section into my scanner and closed the lid. I never use this on my rose blooms as the flowers would be squashed. Besides when I scan these roses I scan from the bottom as if the roses were documents. By closing the lid I told the scanner that I had inserted a transparency. I played with the levels of the resulting scan and I was amazed to see that indeed the light from the bottom of the scanner and the top had rendered the leaves and the barbs transparent. I find that this picture and relatively innocuous blog is a fine rest from all those bras!
And this one
My First Communion, A Book of Birds & A Red Bra
Friday, July 19, 2013
|Linda Lorenzo - El Federal|
Last Thursday’s purchase of Wallace Reyburn’s
Bust-Up – The Uplifting tale of Otto Titzling and the development of the bra
had me going into my files to find photographs of my subjects from the past and
most recently where they may have posed with a bra.
I found close to 50 and alas I felt most
stupid in that in my youthful (when I was young) obsession to have my subjects
undrape as quickly as possible I often skipped the underwear part of it. Now as
an old man I can see the erotic element of clothed or semi clothed women trumping
the pure nude. Live and learn. I have perhaps wasted a greater part of my life
but I have learned and it is not too late to find a remedy and correct my
|Alex & Lolita my grandmother|
My blog, this one, went up and soon as it
was up I remembered three or more subjects who had posed in a bra. But I was
angry at myself that one of my best subjects ever, the very Argentine and very beautiful
Linda Lorenzo had not posed for me in a bra.
On 7 December 1950 when I was 8 years old I
had my first Communion in a chapel around the corner from our house on Calle Melián in Buenos
Aires. I know that exact date for a fact because
Alicia Bakken (she must have been a friend of my mother’s) gave me a book, an
Argentine book, El Mundo de los Pájaros which featured facts and illustrations
of Argentine and South American birds. I have kept the book all these years.
Some 13 years ago,
Juan Manuel Sánchez, Nora Patrich, Claudia Katz and I had a show called
Argentine Nostalgia. During, almost a year preceding the show we met with Linda
Lorenzo and used her as our inspiration for memories we had of the rosy
Argentine of our past.
Remembering my book of
birds I chose a few from my green book and transformed Lorenzo into those
One of them was the
Federal, a bird with a bright red head and chest. I asked Lorenzo if she had a
red bra. She didn’t. Nora Patrich did.
I am happy to report
that indeed I did photograph the beautiful Linda Lorenzo in a bra. I would not
now add her picture to that other bra blog. I will place it here where she deserves, all
alone and with no competition.
That elegant and most melancholy Tero
Titzling's Support For Women
Thursday, July 18, 2013
On Thursday afternoon I went to the new bookstore, The Paper Hound
on West Pender, just to visit. In case you may not have read in my previous blogs, I no longer buy books. I have too many and I now realize that getting rid of book is like telling a friend you do not want to be friends anymore. Dumping books is painful.
Unfortunately I did buy a book. I paid $10. I could not resist.
After a perfunctory reading of the book in the bookstore I found out three facts unknown to me previously. I did not know that Otto Titzling had invented the bra. I suppose now we may guess where that word “tits” came from. Another fact, a most fascinating fact is (check out the second scan of the book here) is that in my obsession to become an expert on that concave bit of nothingness that some call cleavage I had never given a thought to “cleavage underneath”!
Even more startling is the design of bras for trapeze artists. It seems they need other-way-up-support.
Driving home I could not resist the urge to think of how many bra shots I had in my files. I must point out here that I know exactly where the best ones were and as I scanned the pictures seen here I made sure (there is one exception) that every bra and owner appeared only once. In my continuing effort to photograph women undraped I was most annoyed to find many of my subjects had never posed in a bra. What a shame! But then I would have been scanning a few more days.
And just one more
Of ancillary interest
John Updike & Alex Colville - Two Marvellers
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
|Photograph by Benno Friedman|
This will probably be a rambler of a blog,
not exactly an American Motors kind of Rambler but in some ways the theme will
be about stuff that is not going to be coming back.
Coincidentally today is the day I must
return this delightful rambler about art, Just Looking - essays on art, written by John Updike. I never had a chance
to photograph the man but I may still have an opportunity with that other
writer I admire Joyce Carol Oates, after all she is still alive.
Coincidentally today I read in my Vancouver Sun (I get a
daily delivered if you must know) that my favourite Canadian artist, Alex
Colville died. I went to my files and was surprised that I wrote a little piece
about him for the December 1995 Equity Magazine.
The slim connection between Updike and
Colville (others might find many) as far as I am concerned is that Updike wrote
about art and about a type of art that had been transformed to something that
he Updike saw no wonder in anymore. Updike who adored John Singer Sargent, Andrew Wyeth
and Winslow Homer probably would have adored Colville,
too. Colville who did not suffer fools would
have admired Updike for his keen mind.
Updike’s book is delightful. I have re read
it several times. I will risk the copyright hounds by placing here Updike’s
opinion on the Museum of Modern Art, a museum he had seen as a boy, then as a New York City resident. He
left for New England and he would then return
to MOMA every once in a while as a tourist. He wrote this in the initial
introduction to his book (published in 1982) called What MOMA Done Tole Me.
I moved to New England, yet often returned,
a visitor now among the swelling tourist crowd, yet still a marveller, as the
old masterpieces of modernity underwent an occasional shuffle in the exhibition
rooms, supplemented as they were by ever bigger and prouder abstractions, and
then by the grim hilarities of Pop – Rauschenberg goats and spattered
assemblages, Warhol silk screens and stacked Brillo boxes – and by Jasper John’s
neoclassical targets and flags and maps and beer cans and Robert Indiana’s
stately lettering and Lichtenstein’s comic strips and Op Art’s dazzling brief
parade of vibrating stripes and spots. Op was the last art movement I enjoyed,
and Minimalism the last one I was aware of; I could not adjust to artworks that
lay on the floor, brick and tiles and coils of ropes that could be accidentally
kicked. Outside the museum, on Fifty-third
Street and beyond, the world changes, becoming
experimental to the point were nothing art could do seemed revolutionary or
subversive in the way that Pollocks’ drip paintings and de Koonig’s hectically
brushed portraits of women had seemed in the gray flannel world of the Fifties.
Life in the Sixties and Seventies, and not merely painting, had become
expressionistic performance. And the Japanese and Germans and Vietnamese and
Saudis were cutting America
down to size, and the art world was swamped by money bloat and by national
Irrationally, I felt betrayed when Picasso’s
Guernica, which had for so long greeted visitors to MOMA’s second floor, was
returned to a suddenly democratic Spain, and again when, as part of a plan to
cash in on the condominium boom with yet another midtown high-rise, the museum’s
exhibition space was doubled, making it one more museum too big to wander
through without getting a backache. When does modern end? It began, MOMA says
in its own literature, “about 1885”; over a century has gone by, and the dignified
course might be for the museum to declare itself a closed treasury, like the
Cloisters and the Frick. But it has opted, instead, for a greedy open-endednes
and a bigger souvenir shop; it has led the transformation of museums into
gorgeous tourist traps, where once they were sober and even torpid enhancements
of local civic life. The steeples cathedral of artistic faith I used to visit
is still there, but as a box within boxes, its message diffused and its relics
scrambled. The last time I walked through, I couldn’t find my favorite Gris, or
Hid-and-Seek, or The Eternal City, or Arp’s Mountain, Table, Anchors, Nave, or
that construction of paper and string that long ago had looked to my childish
eyes like a kite preserved in an attic.
Below you will find that transition from assignment to reality of my little piece on Alex Colville.