Tuesday, July 31, 2012

La place et le photographe


  1. for me this film demonstrates the excruciating tension between being present and yet not being seen.

    i am reminded now of an article i read this past winter, a conversation between frank horvat and eva rubinstein:

    Frank Horvat : But if you could take the photograph without being noticed, as through a one-way glass wall ?

    Eva Rubinstein : I don't know whether I would. It is hard for me to talk in terms of rules. But how is it for you ? Looking at your photographs of New York, it seems to me that the only times people appear in your photographs, they are completely unaware of your presence, they have their eyes shut, or are under a raincoat, or are wrapped up in plastic. You don't really confront them.

    Frank Horvat : You are right. Even in the studio, when the person is aware and willing to cooperate, I feel as if had to steal the photograph. I get them involved into something, like playing a role, but what I really catch is not what they think they are giving.

    Eva Rubinstein : I have trouble with the idea of catching : people are not for catching. This was my big argument with Diane Arbus, and also with my (and her) teacher Lisette Model. They both thought they had the right to do anything, to anybody, for the sake of their "art". I don't believe that, it may be my particular bias, my reaction against certain people in my life, to whom their needs as "artists" took precedence over almost everything else, whatever the cost to others. To me human beings are more important than art. And what I know about Diane convinces me that when she photographed these people, dwarfs, nudists, freaks, she always took a little more from them than what they had offered her freely - a little pound of flesh more - and this gave her power.

    of course the article goes on (and begins earlier) but this is where this piece of film brings me. (http://www.horvatland.com/pages/entrevues/10-rubinstein-en_en.htm)
    it brings me face to face with my own personal arguments of personal space and art, as well.

    it is good to meet you)))


  2. Thanks Erin for such a thoughtful reply & introducing me to Frank Horvat! Ahh, "Street Photography" is a interesting and difficult area of photography for me. "Life at 1/125 of a second"! May I suggest this book for reference: http://www.thamesandhudson.com/streetphotography.html