Sunday, September 14, 2014















































Pentax ME Super, Kodak TMax 400

34 comments:

Thersites said...

The middle one makes me think of a poem by FT...

"A dainty Hitchcock chair ––
a skeleton in black
against the light ––
"

Z said...

Thersites, nice one.

Jen, excellent

Jen Nifer said...

Thanks for commenting, FJ. FT certainly has a gift for poetry.

Jen Nifer said...

Thanks, Z. :-)

Thersites said...

That he does.

Would that we all used our native talents to such advantage!

Duckys here said...

Your abstract shots are really gaining that random look that only thoughtful composition can generate.

What was the source of the lights?

Jen Nifer said...

I appreciate the feedback, Duck. Thank you.

It's funny, but the first two photos were taken at a small indoor music venue. There were bright "can" lights overhead, but that's about it. I'm surprised anything came out.

Duckys here said...

Instinct. You knew the shot was there.

Duckys here said...

I've been pretty active the last couple weeks coming out of a slump.

I'd call myself an introspective street shooter but I decided to get more aggressive.

There was a banger with a R.I.P. tattoo for one of his homeboys on his neck talking to a friend about being on parole. I decided I wanted the shot for my "Riders on the T" collection and took it.

Been shortening my focal length lately.

Duckys here said...

I've also become fascinated by the ...

Massachusetts State Services Building.

Not sure if it's because I'm developing an appreciation for Brutalism or because some Homeland Security type bobo came out a while back and told me I couldn't take photos.

Bite me.

Jen Nifer said...

Dark
Duet
Group
Profile

Those stand out to me. 'Group made me laugh. Dark was...ironic?

Shortening your focal length...what lens are you using? Someone recently recommended a 35 or wider for the street. Still life doesn't mind much if I get up close and personal. ;-)

I've been reading the most recent Lenswork. It's lovely!

nicrap said...

I'd call myself an introspective street shooter but I decided to get more aggressive.

Something about this comment makes me want to finish the story. Maybe this will also help make my point clearer as to why i posted it where i did:

...The bourgeois world put away 'the beggar'. But he didn't disappear. Rather, his legacy was taken up by the (modern) artist, who perhaps alone of his contemporaries is the sole true heir of the true sovereignty of Christ in the modern world. How it came about is all very interesting, but suffice to say that under the influence of two (one recent and one not so recent) ideas both his mode of life and his art have been constituted as a 'scandal'. This is the scandal surrounding Manet, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Joyce, Miller, etc., which is really the scandal of the truth; and, even though it would sound like blasphemy to many to club them together, this was also the scandal of Christ. That's all. :)



P.s. Of the two ideas i mentioned, the first one is the not so recent idea of the artistic life: this is the idea that the artist, as artist, must lead a singular life, which is "not eniterly reducible to the usual dimensions and norms"; and the second one is the idea that art itself must constitute a relation to reality which is "no longer of ornamentation, or imitation, but one of laying bare, exposure, stripping, excavation, and violent reduction of existence to its basics."

Thersites said...

To me, Brutalism represents all of the "excesses" of the State apparatus, one less concerned with aesthetics than with the maintenance of order (via intimidation vice exhortation).

Thersites said...

As for the motivation of the artist...

Becoming is thus strictly correlative to the concept of REPETITION: far from being opposed to the emergence of the New, the proper Deleuzian paradox is that somethinmg truly New can ONLY emerge through repetition. What repetition repeats is not the way the past "effectively was," but the virtuallty inherent to the past and betrayed by its past actualization. In this precise sense, the emergence of the New changes the past itself, that is, it retroactively changes (not the actual past - we are not in science fiction - but) the balance between actuality and virtuality in the past. [5] Recall the old example provided by Walter Benjamin: the October Revolution repeated the French Revolution, redeeming its failure, unearthing and repeating the same impulse. Already for Kierkegaard, repetition is »inverted memory,« a movement forward, the production of the New, and not the reproduction of the Old. "There is nothing new under the sun" is the strongest contrast to the movement of repetition. So, it is not only that repetition is (one of the modes of) the emergence of the New - the New can ONLY emerge through repetition. The key to this paradox is, of course, what Deleuze designates as the difference between the Virtual and the Actual (and which - why not? - one can also determine as the difference between Spirit and Letter). Let us take a great philosopher like Kant - there are two modes to repeat him: either one sticks to his letter and further elaborates or changes his system, as neo-Kantians (up to Habermas and Luc Ferry) are doing; or, one tries to regain the creative impulse that Kant himself betrayed in the actualization of his system (i.e., to connect to what was already "in Kant more than Kant himself," more than his explicit system, its excessive core). There are, accordingly, two modes of betraying the past. The true betrayal is an ethico- theoretical act of the highest fidelity: one has to betray the letter of Kant in order to remain faithful to (and repeat) the "spirit" of his thought. It is precisely when one remains faithful to the letter of Kant that one really betrays the core of his thought, the creative impulse underlying it. One should bring this paradox to its conclusion: it is not only that one can remain really faithful to an author by way of betraying him (the actual letter of his thought); at a more radical level, the inverse statement holds even more - one can only truly betray an author by way of repeating him, by way of remaining faithful to the core of his thought. If one does not repeat an author (in the authentic Kierkegaardian sense of the term), but merely "criticizes" him, moves elsewhere, turns him around, etc., this effectively means that one unknowingly remains within his horizon, his conceptual field. [6] When G.K. Chesterton describes his conversion to Christianity, he claims that he "tried to be some ten minutes in advance of the truth. And I found that I was eighteen years behind it." [7] Does the same not hold even more for those who, today, desperately try to catch up with the New by way of following the latest "post-" fashion, and are thus condemned to remain forever eighteen years behind the truly New?

-Slavoj Zizek, "Organs w/o Bodies - Gilles Deleuze: Becoming vs. History"

Duckys here said...

Jen, I really like "Group" also and you are the first to show any interest in it.

It may be too obvious but I think it's done in a playful manner that is worth a chuckle.

I waited quite a while for someone to walk by that sign who looked interesting.
I picked him because he has a beard like a scary Muslim and it was an opportunity to get a clear shot.

Duckys here said...

@nicrap -- and the second one is the idea that art itself must constitute a relation to reality which is "no longer of ornamentation, or imitation, but one of laying bare, exposure, stripping, excavation, and violent reduction of existence to its basics."

---------

I've been attracted to minimalism and just how much you can strip out of a photo and still have something of substance.
It's damn difficult.

What those values may be are much more a decision by the viewer than the photographer.

Duckys here said...

Well, Farmer, I think Brutalism got a bad rap.
The name is unfortunate and has its origins in the foreign word for the concrete used.

I have become fascinated by the details of the Mass. Services building and have found it easy to make my peace with it. Likewise Boston City Hall.

I think both have merit but there is your school of thought that sees MiniLuv.

Some thoughts:

1. Brutalism isn't uncommon in downtown Boston and city hall is routinely rated Boston's ugliest building. Obviously by critics who shut their eyes when they are near the Prudential center or Bain Kapital headquarters.

2. The Christian Science center is never named and it's prone to most of the complaints about the style including the issue of durability in the Northeast climate. Place is ugly and falling apart unlike the other Brutalist structures.

3. If you are so concerned with avoiding maintenance of order I must assume you avoid the worst offenders, shopping malls.
I'll take city hall over a Walmart any day.

Thersites said...

Walmart is hardly a shopping mall. Ever been to the Mall of America in Minneapolis?

Jen Nifer said...

Nicrap, when you make reference to the "modern artist", are you talking about someone who creates "modern" art, or a contemporary artist, regardless of their medium? I'm thinking it's a reference to modern art....

Jen Nifer said...

FJ, Walmart is one of Dante's nine circles of hell. Is the Mall of America as bad? I hate malls...

Jen Nifer said...

Duck, The lady with the dog in Group is a great subject!

Thersites said...

Mall of America contains an amusement park and some of the biggest and craziest Lego constructions that the world has ever seen.

Thersites said...

Coaster... Lego

Thersites said...

The sporting goods store had a full-up major league batting cage... and a place to drive golf balls into a net.

nicrap said...

No, no, i mean the contemporary artist, Jen. And by "contemporary" i mean from 19th century onward. It is in him (both in his way of life and his art) more than anyone else in the modern world that the most intense forms of a truth telling with the courage to take the risk of offending are concentrated. Think Miley Cyrus (or am i thinking of someone else?) ;)

nicrap said...

...so yes, in a way, it is modern art but irrespective of the medium. :)

nicrap said...

What those values may be are much more a decision by the viewer than the photographer.

Hmm. How about whatever can get our eminently respectable, well fed bourgeois friend to reach for his or her pearls? I think we can find a common ground there. ;) ... But kidding apart — yeah right! — the underlying idea (in the context of modern art, that is) seems to be of giving expression to what is below, underneath, "what in a culture has no right, or at least no possibility of expression."

However, there is a larger context to it as well, i think, which is that of the truth and of the courage of truth-telling: must not truth (and truth telling), by its very nature (in our world and the way it is), take the form of a scandal?

nicrap said...

@Jen, Ducky

Could i ask a question? As photographers, how important are the titles (captions?) for your photos? Do you spend much time on them? Or—

p.s. But for the hoodie i would have called this one "Waiting for Godot." But Beckett insisted it had to be a bowler. ;) What an expression on her face, though!

Jen Nifer said...

That is a good Waiting For Godot!

I like this one, too.....
https://www.flickr.com/photos/breathless400/8927214599/

Jen Nifer said...

Nicrap, I don't add a title to my photographs. It never occurs to me. How important is it? I don't know. Ducky's titles seem to incorporate humor. Maybe he'll have an answer for you.

-FJ said...

:P

Duckys here said...

As photographers, how important are the titles (captions?) for your photos? Do you spend much time on them?
-----------
My titling is deliberate.

I may not be at all successful but it is an ironic attempt to indicate that language may be inadequate.

It is a visual medium.

Thersites said...

...in other words, an attempt at "author-ity".

"The author is dead!"

"Long live the author!"

Jen Nifer said...

I don't add titles because, for me, language is entirely inadequate. I don't blame language, though...

I also like to find out what someone else sees in the photo. For example, that "beetle" photo....if I had labeled it, you guys would never have seen the beetle.
:-)

Which I guess means, long live the author!