Stravinsky at work

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Arnold Newman took a series of photographs of the elderly Stravinsky at work with his scissors, snipping out short musical phrases and piecing them in place; he also snapped something that must be unique in the history of photographs of composers, a picture of Stravinsky erasing a note – perhaps the most Stravinskian gesture of all.

Andy Warhol’s Dracula

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Andy Warhol,Dracula, 1981, Polacolor 2 print. Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine. Gift of the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc., The Andy Warhol Photographic Legacy Program

Fun fact: in 1974, Andy Warhol produced a film called Blood for Dracula. Art and film come together in an amazing way with this production.

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Roland Barthes and Julia Kristeva in China

"Ultimately — or at the limit — in order to see a photograph well, it is best to look away or close your eyes. ‘The necessary condition for an image is sight,’Janouch told Kafka; and Kafka smiled and replied: ‘We photograph things in order to drive them out of our minds. My stories are a way of shutting my eyes.”
(Roland Barthes, Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography)

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Hiroshi Sugimoto

Throughout the mid to late 1970s and upwards, Hiroshi Sugimoto packed up a folding 4×5 camera & tripod, surreptitiously entered matinees (and, one can only presume, evening film events) and documented the interior of movie theaters across the United States – invoking a classic procedure borrowed from Conceptual Art. He would open the shutter just before the ‘first light’ hit the screen and close it after the credits finished rolling and before the house lights came on. Using this method he was able to invert the subject/object relationship of the movie theatre and use the film itself to illuminate the proscenium and interior. However – it’s MORE than that, isn’t it? There is also a social and political critique implicit to the gesture. The rendering of a ‘blank’ movie screen carries with it a whole series of alternate implications that are highly relevant to a culture of consumption. The unavoidable allusions of mass social programming and lack of content are implicit in the act. This content, largely unaddressed critically, is what lends the images their incredible power – along with the natural fascination of being made privy to the photography’s divine birthright – allowing us to see the normally invisible – to experience a finite collapse of time.

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