I opened Joanna's portfolio and these were the first photographs I saw. My first question was "did you touch anything ? " thing
Friday, April 15, 2011
Celebrating time and acquaintances, today I realized that another Photolucida was taking place as a new exhibition was opening in the Washington D C area. Today is an Anniversary. The very first time I reviewed portfolios at Photolucida I met this very wonderful photographer, no not that one. I met Joanna Knox who amazed me because she came to really show her photographs and talk ask questions , this was refreshing she wanted no gallery, no book deals there was not a burning need to climb the ladder to being a photographic super star. She loved making pictures and at some point way later, months , I mentioned Slowexposures which she enter and became a supporter of ,more than that. Joanna became a friend. I see her each fall and it is fresh again. She is now Joanna Knox Yoder. I met a lot of people in Portland that year none more inspiring than Joanna
I hope that her new exhibition entitled Seen and Unseen which opens this Sunday April 17 at The Athenaeum Gallery in Alexandria VA is the start of many wonderful things for her.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
There are 8 million stories in the naked city, this may be 8million and 1. A joyous one because the photographs engage you not only with their beauty ( I know already it is subjective ) but they provoke you to think about the city's image in historical terms and then those images in relationship to Janine's earlier mentors Atget and Abbott who also recorded great cities under going change.
NEW YORK, MY DEAR
illustrates how to create and add to the conversation that has been in progress since photography began. I feel that even though the subject has sat for pictures before these photographs have the jazzy energy and frantic pace of a young woman experiencing and recording the city in the 21st century. Intimate and personal
daily ,if you live in the city you know these reflected moods , these small bits of space, that tourist may not linger in while they rush to the next must see.
By making unique paper negatives and printing small (11 X 14) in high contrast Janine has created a visual staccato a glittery sound is being made like a jewel that need great darkness,she provides both These can only be made by her it is her story in the 8 million and one .
Would it not be wonderful to see what other photographers are saying about the city now, that is New York , my dear
Sunday, April 10, 2011
In the golden era of black and white television there was a program called
THE NAKED CITY , based on a forties film noir of the same name. It open with a voice saying "There are 8 million stories in the naked city this has been one of them" this moral warning was repeated at the end. Maybe it was from watching this show , but when it came time for me to start to look at colleges to attend the first place that was forbidden for me to even consider was New York.
New York was never a destination for me but I guess it is maybe a little part of the dreams of being an artist especially in the sixties when New York replaced Paris, as the center of the Art world. Manhattan Island which is one of five boros is also the smallest measuring about 14 by 2.5 miles ,yet with it gleaming spires and cathedrals of commerce it represent to most the City of New York. There is this raw energy the constant changing . I think it was me who said New York stays the same because it is always changing. Lately this seems more true in 2008 more than 426 new building were being built.It stopped for a while but now many neighborhoods
and the skyline itself are changing.
I love the City because it is easy to get around in part of that raw energy is a many level public transportation system.This freedom of movement is only challegened when people plan events on the same evening and usually starting at the same time.This can cause delicate me to go into shock from having to chose between friendship and the best canapes.Most of the time I wind up in a ball afraid to leave the house. This scenario happened last Saturday when two events were being held at the same time but at a distance.
Amazingly,I decided to be a better person ,do the right thing and in the end I was rewarded with a most pleasant evening. My choice was to go to a senior exhibition on East 71st Street at Marymount Manhattan College to support the fabulous Janine Noelle .I must say fabulous is a word I do not like so it is stressful to use it but Janine does have her moments.
I got there an hour early so I was able to see the show and spend time with the artist and some of her family.The exhibition which was simply installed in a white room with some mirrored walls and a bold black and white marble floor which could have drained or distracted from the photographs presentation but didn't. Everything was in harmony
"New York New York"," big city of dreams'' taking your picture is a challenge, what does an artist do, is it a landscape or a portrait, is it sitting still or moving,do you rely on the human presence ? The city has a personality that wants to control its' own image it demands to give input into the making because there is always a need to reshape the iconic.Somewhere in my mind ring the words" I am ready for my close up". Remember the eight million stories. I was wowed by Janine take on this aggressive yet quiet city of many shadows.These picture celebrate the neighborhoods.There are 20 images in the show .The first one in this post is Gramercy, followed by Chelsea ,Midtown East, Midtown West , Chelsea, and Harlem.