Monday, June 21, 2010


That's the noun I'm talking about, not the verb:

I was always fascinated by those old school NYC architecture shots taken by Steiglitz or what's her face or whoever else was doing pictures of buildings back in the 20s and 30s. They could make something look so imposing or majestic and most of the times both of those things.

I like taking pictures of buildings, but no matter how cool I think one looks when I see it in the street (well not "in" the street), what I see with my own eyes never quite translates to film, even though I've looked through the lens and lined up the shot.

Like with those old pictures, the buildings didn't even have to be iconic for the photos to be powerful. Or even those shots from the great NYC building picture taking spree they did in the late 30s when the city took a picture of every building in the 5 boroughs, for the purposes of tax assessment. You can order those pictures from the city archives. I have my building's picture from that survey framed on my wall.

There's something about seeing the art in the utilitarian. Maybe Warhol started it all when he told us that a can of soup isn't just a can of soup. Maybe after that we began to look at our world differently, and saw art in places we never thought to seek it out.

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