You may have already heard this mystery photographer’s story, if not, take a look.
Just a link for all the unknown photographers out there, documenting the grit and stuff of life.
Addition: I should clarify on behalf of a friend, that when the subject can be difficult to look at, the below quote about Walker Evans’ work might come in handy.
Art for art’s sake:
‘Many artists during the New Deal era wished to portray the poor to gain empathy and support for the experimental political program. Agee and Evans, however, saw this as a crude and manipulative practice, and defied it by “respecting the moral integrity of the poor while recognizing in these tenants something transcendentally human, making them more than just the tools of political propaganda,” said Jones. ‘
Continuing on that theme, Ken Burns discusses how he is primarily an artist, not an historian. Burns wants to be recognized as an artist striving for higher aesthetic and technical goals in his work (his influences range from Martin Scorsese to Henri Cartier-Bresson) in addition to the “social conscience.”
As for such an abstraction as a ‘social conscience’ he sees himself:
“…rooted in a humanist tradition of American History..that includes not just the old top down version, but the bottom up version that acknowledges women and labor and minorities….”
No wonder some folks at NPR love him. Here’s libertarian Nick Gillespie needling Burns about that issue.
Here’s a poem by beloved American modernist/physician whose work I had never associated with any sort of political philosophy, and which I still don’t while addressing his work:
When I was younger
it was plain to me
I must make something of myself.
I walk back streets
admiring the houses
of the very poor:
roof out of line with sides
the yards cluttered
with old chicken wire, ashes,
furniture gone wrong;
the fences and outhouses
built of barrel staves
and parts of boxes, all,
if I am fortunate,
smeared a bluish green
that properly weathered
pleases me best of all colors.
will believe this
of vast import to the nation
Art for its own sake.
As that same friend points out. Bill Moyers, “working-man” populist though he is, strives for journalistic excellence. But as for history, perhaps no one should aim for a Zinn-like state.
Related On This Site Via Reason: ‘Salvador Allende’s Cybersocialist Command Center’… From Grist.Org Via The New Republic Via The A & L Daily: ‘Getting Past “Ruin Porn” In Detroit’…Marketplace aesthetics in service of “women”: Dove’s Campaign For Real Beauty: Pascal Dangin And Aesthetics…
Philosopher Of Art Denis Dutton of the Arts & Letters Daily says the arts and Darwin can be sucessfully synthesized: Review of Denis Dutton’s ‘The Art Instinct’
How might Nietzsche figure in the discussion, at least with regard to Camille Paglia. See the comments: Repost-Camille Paglia At Arion: Why Break, Blow, Burn Was Successful…Here’s Nietzsche scholar J.P. Stern on Nietzsche’s anti-Christian, anti-secular morality (Kant, utilitarians), anti-democratic, and anti-Greek (except the “heroic” Greek) biases…
Repost-From NPR: Grants To The NEA To Stimulate The Economy?
Goya, that modern, had to make a living from the royal family: Goya’s Colossus…Goya’s Fight With Cudgels…
One thought on “In The Mail: Vivian Maier”
I recently went to Sydney for the launch of a book called ‘Liberating Aboriginal People from Violence’ by a wonderful, caring friend of mine, Dr Stephanie Jarrett. My words are on the cover of her book ‘We need to support those who tell the truth”. Dr Jarrett does that and she cares, maybe too much for her own good. I have seen the tears in her eyes and heard the passion in her voice when she talks about our murdered and bashed ones. I trust her completely. But of course those who aren’t interested in the truth are out to bring her down. She has been attacked in the Monthly magazine by its editor John van Tiggelen in an article called ‘Thinking Backwards’.