Archives

March 2004

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Mar 31

“Popular science magazines used to be aimed at the geeky wannabe inventor. Today, it’s all about the glamour of war.” - story
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Mar 31

“An emotional former President George H.W. Bush on Tuesday defended his son’s Iraq war and lashed out at White House critics. It is ‘deeply offensive and contemptible’ to hear ‘elites and intellectuals on the campaign trail’ dismiss progress in Iraq since last year’s overthrow of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, the elder Bush said in a speech to the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association annual convention.” (my emphasis; no, this is not from The Onion, this is on Yahoo News)
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Mar 31

Last time I linked to Ghost Town the bandwidth limit was exceeded fairly rapidly as everybody and their grandmother was also linking to it. So if you want to see somebody’s photos from a motorcycle ride through the Chernobyl area go and look now (before it’s down again).
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Mar 31

Jérôme Brézillon’s portfolio contains a nice selection of subject matters, such as these French landscapes.
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Mar 30

Check out eye candy neurastenia.
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Mar 29

“I can’t describe reality; at the most, I can try to capture things that seem to be valid, the way I see them.” - Anders Petersen
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Mar 26

Lisa Kereszi’s portfolio contains lots of rather interesting photos. My personal favourites are in the “Projects” section plus the “Eccentrics”.
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Mar 24

Larry W. Schwarm takes photos of prairie fires, before or after a fire, or while it’s on fire. The Midwest, with its reputation to be utterly boring, never looked this beautiful.
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Mar 23

Ron Flory sent me the link to Joan Myers’ website. Mrs Myers has lots of fairly nice landscapes in her portfolio. But what really struck me was her series Women of a Certain Age. To quote her from one of those pages: “None of my friends would pose for me. That was my first lesson. ‘My body is not beautiful,’ said one. Another delayed a shooting session repeatedly until she ‘got in shape.’ Where are the images of older women? Who defines what is beautiful? Is ‘beautiful’ part of the definition of who a woman is? We all age daily. The body but records the passing of time. What does aging have to do with being a woman?”
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Mar 23

In the latest edition of The New York Review of Books, physicist, winner of the Nobel Prize, and author Steven Weinberg discusses NASA’s latest changes in plans after Bush jr decided to send people to Mars.
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Mar 23

Chris Faust’s panoramic photos document the places we live in. You don’t see any people in these places. It’s quite startling to see how empty places start to look without people.
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Mar 23

Tom Bamberger creates digital panoramas that stretch out quite a bit - which, unfortunately, makes the web a bad medium to show the photos.
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Mar 22

The DataBase of Urban Exploration’s goal is “to promote industrial archaeology and architecture”. (thru sublimate)
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Mar 22

Excellent comparison of Bacon’s work with older paintings/masters. (thru vigna maru)
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Mar 22

“the first vienna vegetable orchestra plays music exclusively on vegetable instruments: carrots and cucumbers instead of guitars and drums. or, with their new cd automate, a cuke-o-phon and radish- marimba instead of laptop and sampler. the music presents a transfer of electronic music pieces and structures to the instruments of the vegetable garden. […] after the concert, the stage is left to the cooks who then work the instruments into a tasty vegetable soup which the audience and musicians consume together. the concert’s audience thereby has the possibility of once again enjoying what they have just heard, examining any remaining instruments more closely and conversing with the musicians.” You know this sounds quite amusing and all but the music is actually really good.
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Mar 22

You can find thousands and thousands of amateur and semi-pro photographers online who exhibit their naked people, so-called nudes. There’s a whole weblog devoted to them, called art nudes. Some of them are noteworthy. For example there’s one who introduces one of his ideas saying “it was about the only truly creative idea I had ever had” (he’ll always have my sheer admiration for writing that!). Terry Donovan decided to “deliberately adopt the same poses as the females that he had shot before”. This might be one of those very rare occasions where’s the ubiquitous and utterly annoying teenage phrase “Oh my God!” is quite appropriate. Enjoy!
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Mar 21

Zed Nelson most recent book (Love Me) covers the way our culture approaches beauty.
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Mar 20

If there’s any photographic genre that I think is vastly overrated it’s the female self-portrait. Make no mistake: The human body is one of the most beautiful subjects of photography. And we have every reason in the world to be bored if not fed up with most of those photos of the female nude that are usually done by men. But nude self portraits by (usually) young women… I mean really? Francesca Woodman is a particularly “interesting” example in this category.
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Mar 20

We’ve entered the era of Soap Opera News. Soap Opera News reports “progress” on some news item on an hourly (“breaking news”-style) basis and in most cases, it turns out it was all much ado about nothing. News as cheap entertainment, as a cheap thrill for the masses, where it doesn’t matter any longer that reality is usually infinitely more complicated. News that can be very conveniently manipulated simply by the way it’s being presented. News stations can always deny they manipulate the news because the “facts” never are. In fact, there hardly ever are any facts. See, for example, the hunt for that “top Al Qaeda leader” in Pakistan who, as it probably has just turned out, isn’t there. Clearly, Soap Opera-style news, exciting for the likes of CNN, Fox “News”, and all the other usual suspects - including an administration whose only hope for “re”-election is to maintain permanent fear of terrorism in the electorate. Update (22 March): “[Carl] Bernstein, the former Washington Post journalist who with reporter Bob Woodward unearthed the Watergate scandal, told a crowd of about 200 in a speech Thursday that much of today’s news has deteriorated into gossip, sensationalism and manufactured controversy.” story
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Mar 19

In The Guardian, David Hockney argues that “that painting can do things photography can’t, even when it comes to telling the truth about war. […] Photography, with its claim to truth, is a discipline, he thinks, and he’s glad digital technology is ending the rule of the one-eyed monster that never lied. ‘I suppose I never thought the world looked like photographs, really. A lot of people think it does but it’s just one little way of seeing it. All religions are about social control. The church, when it had social control, commissioned paintings, which were made using lenses’ - as Hockney has argued in his book Secret Knowledge - ‘and when it stopped commissioning images, its power declined, slowly. Social control today is in the media - and based on photography. The continuum is the mirrors and lenses.’” Wrong, retorts Joel Sternfeld, winner of the Citigroup photography prize: “Photography has always been capable of manipulation”.
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Mar 18

“The ‘al-Qaida victory’ argument is quick, easy, and profoundly wrong – for four reasons. The first and most obvious is the nature of the decisive switch that occurred in millions of Spanish minds between Thursday 11 March and Sunday 14 March. During this period, grief at Thursday’s horror was compounded by anger at their government’s manipulation of information over the next two days – an approach premised on blaming the Basque militant group ETA until polling day and reaping the rewards afterwards. […]
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Mar 18

I’ve always wanted to link to Tracey Moffatt’s work but I never found a good link. Well, here is one.
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Mar 18

Anne Zahalka’s portfolio is quite diverse and you really want to look through all the different categories to discover lots of gems.
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Mar 9

“PhotoSeen is an ever-changing gallery for an expanding group of independent photographers. It exists to provide inspiration, motivation peer-to-peer critiques and a place to share our photographic passions.”
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Mar 7

Frank Schinski has done a lot of interesting projects, all well worth the visit.
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Mar 4

“Philip Kwame Apagya’s formal portraits in front of commissioned painted backgrounds seem to be suspended between realism and a sort of naïvitè, they are both unreal and hyperealistic: the dreams of african people are put on stage - against scenery which praises consumer society.”
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Mar 3

There gotta be a few good photoblogs out there, I thought today, and I started looking for them. Of course, it’s hard to define what “good” means - as usual, it’s all a matter of taste. Anyway, I came across making happy which has a nice mix of panoramic and Holga photos, plus some explanatory words along with them. chromasia’s photography is different but nice, too.
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Mar 2

Julian Thomas sent me the link to Heavy Metal Madness, noting that if you put together those postcards of industrial buildings you’d end up with something that looks very similar to what the Bechers have been doing with their photography. Isn’t that interesting?
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Mar 2

“However much you might play at seeing his work as just another movie, Gibson has gone outside the normal bounds of show business and into the territory of America’s religious absolutists: John Ashcroft having himself anointed with oil, gay-hating lawmakers attempting to write Leviticus into the Constitution, antiabortionists shooting to kill, generals declaring holy war against the Muslim infidel. Our country has a great, great many such people who do not consider their convictions to be open to discussion. They maintain a significant hold on political power; and since a lot of them have an antinomian streak, I doubt the rule of law would stand in their way, should we manage to loosen their grip. The ever-boyish and ingenuous Gibson, with his simple faith, has made The Passion of the Christ as a gift for these people. “Thumbs down.” - Stuart Klawans in The Nation
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Mar 1

Richard Caldicott concerns himself with studying colours and forms.
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