6 Long Weeks
I have finally finished looking at more than 40,000 prints and signing over 15,000 of them for the sale of my Archive. Yesterday and today were, and are, travel days, and I am deeply tired from the intensity of the effort. So the next few days will still be quiet time for me with pictures only until I recover enough to write about the images.
But I wanted to thank all of you for your support and patience as well as the effort some of you made to keep the observations about life and photographs flowing. I’d like to thank Jose and Ece, and all the rest for the wisdom and feelings your comments contained.
Tin Tin and the Girls
Two Photographs; not more than 20 feet and 30 seconds apart
The Italians would be speechless without their hands
Some days are …………..?
As the Italians say, nulla, niente
For many years I have come across chairs, both humble or grand, sitting out in the world waiting to be sat in or carted away. These relics have shown their personalities to me in a variety of countries and cities, and in some strange way I have become a collector of them, but to what end I never knew. Oh, yes, I’ve thought, and maybe even said to friends, “some day I’d like to put a book together with these chairs,” but it hasn’t happened yet.
While in Florence for the opening of the Leica store I mentioned in the last post, I wound my way through the back streets to get to know the place a little better. Of course the chairs found me, or I them. On that day these 2 showed up, and while I was on the streets some hand made wall messages also called out for attention.
I particularly liked the one that says, “place your hand to be tele-transported,” And I was!
The day after the opening, right across the street from the Leica store in Florence, this little scene unfolded in all of 5 seconds. And then it was gone. As if it never existed. The street is like that. It gives and it goes away. My Leica is always ready.
I had been continuing to work on some still lives with new objects that had come to me through my friend Gianni. The various weights and materials interested me, and this was a setup I had just started when I remembered that I was to open the new Leica store in Florence later that day.
I left the work as – in progress – and off we went to Florence. While waiting there for the Leica activities to begin I wandered around the nearby streets and came across this little drama on a dark side street. As soon as I saw her face I felt as if she was out of the 16th century paintings of madonnas and virgins.
I have to admit that the death of my brother has thrown me. Add to that my long return flight to Italy, and jet lag, the arrival of guests tomorrow, and my need to go ‘On Press’ early in the week, and I can see that the time needed to really devote myself to thinking, posting and writing over the next few days, will be tough to find.
So I’d like to put up a suite of days to give me some breathing room.
9-19 Dear friends arrive with baby Chayton.
9-20 Gianni brought this character to stand guard.
9-21 Chayton and Pasta form a lasting relationship.
9-22 An older woman slipped on the moss in the old Roman hot springs. But was OK.
9-23 Our dear workshop cook, Lisena, made a homey Italian family dinner for all of us.
Perhaps we are all programmed with visuals that we have collected over our lives. For example; this woman carrying a doll at her breast – probably her 3 year old is walking up ahead with daddy – but she, in that moment, for that split second, seemed to be nursing an infant, or holding it madonna-like, especially since I was in Italy where those paintings are innumerable.
In any event I responded on instinct and reached for it to see what it would look like later on.
A Brick Beach is what Siena’s main piazza reminds me of. Thousands of people can fit into this fan shaped, south sloping, herring bone patterned arena, and they do, every day during the tourist season. It is here that one can walk among them and feel free to photograph everyone. It has that special vibe where no one feels taken advantage of by a photographer’s curiosity. I used to bring my street photography classes here back when I had a photography workshop from 1995 to 2001. This was always a great place to look at life in all its surprising and playful combinations.