Photographs, words and sounds
Posts Tagged ‘art’

Do we really care about art?

For the past week, I’ve been in Bologna, Italy, for a series of meetings and workshops. It was only on Saturday that I had a free afternoon and used the opportunity to see something of that gorgeous city. The timing was pretty good. There was an exhibit on the work of Hugo Pratt and his famous graphic novel character Corto Maltese; a show featuring over 200 less well known works of Salvador Dalí; and an exhibit of Mexican 20th century art featuring works of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera among others.

The photo above is the scene in front of the Palazzo Albergati. It’s a queue of people waiting to get into the gallery to see the Mexican art exhibit. It would take hours to get in, hours I didn’t have, so I decided to skip it and see as much as I could. I did manage to get into Palazzo Belloni after only about half an hour wait in line with elderly couples, students, families, and even a bunch of sketchy looking skeets all eager to see the Dalí exhibit.

Next time when the government cuts arts funding or removes culture from the name of the department that is supposed to help us create more of it -and it surely will- as we raise hell, we should also ask ourselves why is nobody lining up in front of our galleries. In what ways have we failed and allowed art to become irrelevant to so many outside of the art circle? We need more than just money, we desperately need a public that cares. How we get there is mostly up to us, but it may require a braver, less self-referential and more engaging art.

On a lighter note, you should also know that the Italians line up for ice cream confirming my lifelong belief that good ice cream is indistinguishable from good art.

At an exhibit


Ah… a neglected blog. No particular reason why it’s neglected. I have been photographing a lot, experimenting with different films and developers and have several projects on the go.

The photograph above was made a week or so ago at The Rooms, provincial art gallery and archives. There are two large new museum exhibits about Newfoundland and Labrador that I would highly recommend. There is also a huge retrospective of the work of Mary Pratt, a realist painter originally from New Brunswick, but making most of her work in Newfoundland. Little Miss F loves the Pratt exhibit. I posted the above photograph on my flickr account and a lot of people seem to like it so I thought I’d share it here too.


Tearsheets time…

Got my copy of Canadian Art today. If you want to see more photos from that day you can do so here.

Croatian word of the day: umjetnik artist [oom yet nik]


Canadian Art and William Gill

New issue of Canadian Art magazine is out. It promises to be a great photography issue featuring Ed Burtynsky’s and Donald Weber’s work. Lisa Moore wrote an essay on the work of Will Gill, local visual artist, and I had the pleasure of photographing Will for the story.

I am not sure which photo they ran or what they did with it. If the tearsheets are worth posting, I will post them once I get my hands on a copy of the magazine. In the meantime, this is a set of shots from that day. Most of them are digital, except the square one which I shot on film just because I can.

You can see some of Will’s work on his website.

Croatian word of the day: umjetnik artist [um ye tnik]


[Old Blog] Jonathan Green

This is another portrait I made for work. (There is actually quite a bit of photography I do for work and I have no idea why I don’t post more of it here.) Jonathan Green is a young print maker and a graduate of Memorial’s fine arts program at Corner Brook campus. I interviewed him for the university’s paper and one of his etchings is on the cover of the next issue of alumni magazine which I am just about to send to printers.

Tomorrow, I am leaving for a short weekend trip to Fogo and Change Islands. I expect a lot of photos…

Croatian word of the day: gravura etching


[Old Blog] Crystal Parsons, Street Scenes, Mumbai, On My Mind, PDN, Robert Frank

Independent curator Crystal Parsons and provincial art gallery technician Chris Batten are leafing through a portfolio of prints and drawings stored at The Rooms.

Today is a day for links, I think. Here we go:

Los Angeles Times first. Street Scenes is an interesting idea that takes you on a walk through the neighbourhoods across Southern California. Not hard news, but engaging, interesting and informative. After Street Scenes, check out Michael Robinson Chavez’s piece onMumbai’s largest slam.

Now scoot over to the East Coast and check out On My Mind feature in Boston Globe – these are the guys who came up with the Big Picture concept.

And speaking of Big Picture, PDN has a new feature called Photo of the Day really worth checking out.

And last but not least, here is a three part YouTube doc on Robert Frank: Part IPart II, and Part III.

Croatian word of the day: bljuzga slash [bl yoo z ga]


In the vaults

Over the last little bit I have been working on a story about an independent curator Crystal Parsons. She is currently working on a project that requires her to spend a lot of time in the vaults of the provincial art gallery The Rooms. Yesterday, I arranged with her to take a few photos at the gallery. I was in for a treat, because she managed to get me into the vaults where I was allowed to take photographs of her and the technician Chris Batten going through the immense collection most of the time far away from the eyes of the public. The facility itself is amazing. One of the most advanced in the country. In fact, my understanding is that the only comparable art storage in Canada is in Ottawa at the National Gallery. The photo collection is stunning. Stunning!

I will, post the whole story and audio once I finish writing/editing stuff…

Croatian word of the day: kolekcija collection [col e ktz ia]


Report cards, forks, food (art), street scenes

Parenting post: Miss F. (right) brought home a perfect report card. There is one sentence that made us laugh out loud: “I would like her to become more of a risk taker,” says her teacher. Yeah, you and the rest of us.

We were talking in the car about the report card and my significant other said that the teacher mentioned that Miss F. should talk more. From the back seat she quipped: “In French? Because, I talk A LOT.”

Little Miss F. (left) talks a lot, too and has a very large vocabulary for her age. She added a new word recently – fork. I bet you see where this is going. The problem is that she can’t really say an ‘r’ so ‘fork’ sounds like ‘fock,’ which in turn sounds very much like a Newfoundland pronunciation of ‘fuck.’ She is very expressive and loud so if she does not have a fork at the table she demands it loudly and clearly. We’ll be avoiding eating in public for a while 🙂

And here are two food related links. The first one is to Mike Hawkins’ blog foodfunk. And a different kind of vegetable art here by Ju Duoqi (h/t Andrew Sullivan).

And here is a neat concept by LA Times called Street Scenes. Now, imagine what you could do if you mashed this with an interactive map and invited others from around the world to contribute to it. You’d end up with a fascinating slice of human life. (h/t Mark Hamilton)

Croatian word of the day: vilica fork [vee li tza]