Valle dei Templi, Agrigento, Sicily 2005
Sometimes photographs just come to you.
You see them from across the field,
and you think,
"this is truly a lovely photograph walking towards me."
And they arrive to where you're standing,
And they're just as lovely up close,
And they present themselves,
so direct, so easy.
And you think, "Ah,
the grace of youth."
If you haven't had the opportunity to stop at the old jail in Marshall and participate in the brick project, you should do so. This amazing community art project is all about memory, both community memory, as well as, personal memory. Have your thoughts, your ideas, your likes and desires memorialized on the walls of the renovated jailhouse. This is a great idea from Madison residents Josh Copus and Emily Patrick and I urge everyone to come out, make a brick, say what's on your mind.
Go to https://communitybrick.org/ for scheduling.
What could be better than seeing young people commit to our community and to each other. In these trying times it gives one hope that all will be okay in the world.
I listened to the Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young song Teach Your Children today as I looked at this photograph from the anti-racism rally in Marshall on August 17. I was heartened. As I've aged I've often wondered if those of us of my generation have, in fact, taught our children well. Have we taught them to be engaged in their communities; taught them to value all people; taught them to honor the environment; taught them the stupidity of hate and the beauty of diversity? I wonder if we have taught them to teach their children? Clearly, some people have taught well, and others are teaching well.
LITTLE WORLDS: A WORK IN PROGRESS EXHIBITION OPENING
- Friday, September 8, 2017
- 6:30pm 8:30pm
- Fall Line Press675 Drewry Street, Suite 6Atlanta, GA 30306USA (map)
Explore Madison County, North Carolina through the eyes of Guggenhiem, NEH and NEA fellow Rob Amberg. Since moving there in 1973, writing and photographing the evolving culture and environment of this unique piece of Appalachia has been his lifetime project.
His first book, Sodom Laurel Album, is a cult classic now in its second printing and was published in 2002 by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke and the University of North Carolina Press. His second book from Madison County, The New Road: I-26 and the Footprints of Progress in Appalachia, was published in 2009 by the Center for American Places at Columbia College Chicago. To complete the trilogy, a third book is in progress. Fall Line has been in conversation with Amberg about this third book currently titled Little Worlds.
The exhibition will feature framed prints as well as unframed working prints presented in a wall collage. Many of these images will appear in the third book, and it gives the viewer a chance to see the edit in process. The exhibition is intended to show some of the processes and decisions that go into the editing process of making a book.
Earlier Event: June 29
Later Event: September 29
Whatever misapprehension or concern Leslie's parents may have had about me - my Yankee ways or "he ain't from around here" attitudes - clearly vanished when we brought Kate into their lives. A grandchild was the one thing they wanted that they didn't have and Kate fulfilled their dreams and desires, and then some. Kate was nine years old when Jim passed away so his experience of her, and she of him, was limited. But Faye has gotten the full dose. And now, twenty-five years later, roles are reversed and Kate is more likely to be holding her grandmother although not wearing curlers.
Yesterday evening, as Leslie was washing her mom's hair in the kitchen sink, she suggested to Faye that she might just as well shave her chin hairs, too, which were becoming unruly and unsightly. Faye frowned, not wanting to admit what was evident from a quick look in the mirror.
I, in an effort to add some light humor to the scene, issued a worn-out call:
Shave and a Haircut, two bits.
To which Leslie seamlessly and promptly offered a response:
Momma's got a cow with two tits.
Such a great thing for Marshall.
I'm proud of our town for moving forward.
With Benjamin, our cousin Enzo Costantino, and his friend, John Carlo. We drove up in the mountains, to the north slope of Mt. Etna, Enzo looking for wine. We stopped in a small village and he asked around and we came to this man. I can't remember his name, if I ever knew it. He had barrels in the underground of his house that looked like they had been there for centuries. We tasted a couple of different varieties and Enzo bought a few gallons for his own home use.
The Babbitts left Orlando, Florida, in the early 1970s, when their orange grove that had been in Howard's family for thee generations was swallowed by development surrounding DisneyWorld. They planted apples and raised their children on Sprinkle Creek. We bought rocking chairs at their yard sale before they moved because of I-26.
- from The New Road
There are copies of my book I-26 and the Footprints of Progress in Appalachia available for purchase on my website. Copies of my other books, including Sodom Laurel Album, are also available. http://robamberg.com/store/
It had been a long, dusty day in Pompeii. We were happy to get to the Forum, the main square in the city, close to the exits, knowing we could get a gelato at the snack bar. In the square there were a number of modern art sculptures on permanent display depicting historical and mythological figures. The sculptures were made of steel, and very large, and for the most part anatomically correct in that not-so-subtle Greek/Roman way. I enjoyed watching how different groups and individuals responded to Hercules' (I think it was Hercules) most impressive penis. This particular young man was with a group of friends, but he approached the statue alone with a confidence bordering on brashness. He sat down on the leg and put his mouth on the giant penis. The reaction from the group of people around the sculpture was quick and mixed. Mostly there were groans and sounds of embarrassment, but there was also laughter from his friends. The boy, sensing the displeasure, stopped, looked right at the crowd and announced, "It's okay, everyone. We are French."
One day a few years ago, not long after Jamie began working with me, he was looking through contact sheets, familiarizing himself with my work. He found this photograph. I can't say it was one I had ever even looked at, much less thought about printing. Jamie said he liked it and was able to talk about why and his thoughts got my attention. We set out to scan and edit it.
At this point, I had no idea who the person in the photograph was or where I made it. For the longest time I thought it was taken over at Berzilla Wallin's house, during one of her homecomings. But her granddaughter, Lana Robinson, said she didn't know the woman and reminded me that Berzilla's house was log.
It was a bit of a mystery to me. It was a singular negative - the negatives before and after it from two different situations where I knew the people or the place. I copied it to my ex wife thinking she might know who it was as the other images were of our home or with her good friend, Becky. She had no idea.
By now I had grown to like the image - the quietness of it, the easy posture, the far-away look - and see how it could easily fit with a current project I'm working on. But the project is particular to place and theme and how to include an image from an unknown origin of an unknown person I know nothing about.
I talk a lot about photography providing us with memories of our shared and personal pasts and I think that is so. But with this photograph, my memory fails me and I'm left wondering who is this person? who came into my life for 1/125th of a second and has never entered my mind again until now; and not as a memory, but only as a beautiful image.