here is an interesting round table that may shed some light on the, felt, lessening of our predictive powers. See you the next year.
Speaking of space, as a concept, I've found that this blog has some interesting analysis about it notably here and here.
Norberto Bobbio called the "society of traffic lights", in Italy, it seems, we are having the season of roundabouts. We are certainly late with respect to the other developed European Countries but, as usual, we are making our best in terms of Mediterranean obsession. I'm not sure of the subtle philosophical implications but certainly it requires a totally different approach in negotiations among drivers. In visual terms roundabouts reshape the visual landscape in very powerful ways redistributing space and view points and, ultimately, for the postmodern urban reader, the centre of the roundabout is certainly an exemplary "no where land".
A photograph preserves a moment of time and prevents it being effaced by the supersession of further moments. In this respect photographs may be compared to images stored in memory. Yet there is a fundamental difference: whereas remembered images are the residue of a continous experience, a photograph isolates the appearances of a disconnected instant.
From "Another way of telling" by John Berger
Fondovalle is one of my oldest themes. I could say that its the Theme since my first photo. Taking pictures of these places helps me to stay in touch with em even if my position is now more that of an informed tourist instead of that of an insider as in my youth. This, for me, is one of the difficulties of the theme. Some times the weight of the memories gets in making things less clear. So I'm constantly suspended between the emotional plane given by the memories and the pictorial one where I simply try to make an honest description of the place.
In its unceasing expansion the city grows embracing portions of space that will be progressively filled. The space in between, the interstices, in the wait, is colonized by natural creatures, trees, weeds or other unwanted living forms. In other cases the, once, natural spaces get smaller and smaller. It is an ephemeral landscape that is not going to last.
I intimately think that it is something new. For a long time I've followed several theoretical and practical paths hoping to reach, at some point, some kind of synergy. I'm not totally sure, after all my lack of self-confidence is a distinguishing trait of myself, but in some way it is going to work, more now that I've filled many of the gaps I had on the history of landscape painting. An other point is that of my studies in Psychology and Physiology of vision. This one is having a great impact on my photographic doing. Mainly my visual interest are shifting from the object/subject to my subjective vision and the effort to communicate it. Yes in many ways I feel that I'm getting close to what Paul Klee said in a conference about which I've posted here.
The quote seems to suggest that the attention to the the process is to be considered a waste of time given the many things waiting to be documented about the deep cultural and economical crisis we are facing now. But I'm not in for a commentary, instead I would like to point out this little experience I had a couple of days ago with my teenager daughter about what is to be considered a photography. The question rose on the meaning of the term "posa" (in Italian a mix of exposure and pose). In photographic terms the posa is the first technical step in the process.
The obvious reference was to read the first pages of Stephen's Shore "The nature of photographs" but after a while I realized that the cognitive problem was a bit deeper that initially thought. The highly theoretical assertions by Shore are not easy to grasp in the absence of a sound practice.
Being a guy photographically born in the darkroom, the idea that a photograph is a product of a process that goes from visualization till the finished print took form the first time I developed a roll of black and white Ilford Panf (for several reasons that may surprise you I've always avoided Kodak :-) and what came out was not only far from being satisfactory but evidence was that the things to work out were quite a lot. Along the rather steep learning curve in making photographs I've come across several conceptual frameworks that helped me in separating the strictly technical processes from the cognitive ones. A conscious approach to the processes my be of some help in playing the visual game. Reflecting on the process is a question that recurs every time there is a change either in techniques or, if I may simplify, in our second nature or in the general Gestalt.
Instead my daughter grew up the purely digital instant picture world. For her taking an exposure/pose and making a photograph was the same thing. The purely digital grown uses a more opaque tool than ours. I wont say that everybody must do reflection on the media, may the Gods save us from this, but a specialized niche may have some sense for a lot of people. Usefulness anyway has never been a decisive support to Art making.
This is to be intended as a critique to the content referred by the post and not the post itself, of great utility.
A thing that amazed me in studying Constable's time frame is the constant attention to adapt models of painted landscape coming mainly from Italy and Holland to the locally, adn actual, available subjects and visual experiences. This effort constitutes one of the most original aspects of the British painting of the time given the substantially static location of all the previous development in painting. The same effort was to be done, later, in the USA by the Hudson River School. Today adaptation of models seems a somewhat secondary problem. Differently localized landscapist, in the search of what are considered mainstream subjects either move around the world to reach the original locations or simply represent only the parts of their own landscape that somewhat resemble the original ones. This applies to urban landscape too. Personally, in my need to express my visual ideas and feelings, I am placing the need to adapt the landscape imaging models to my own experience and this is one of my main aims at the moment. Perhaps this may result in being quite difficult but I like challenges.
For an explanation of "pmc" see here. A few words of explanation are needed for non Italian visitors. The big hat that you spot in some pictures is that of the Army Corps called "Alpini". It is an old mountain icon not for the war skills (albeit they did sacrifices during the won and lost wars hardly imaginable for us "fat whites") but for the attitude towards wine. The Menhirs have nothing to do with these places (the glaciers were firmly in place at the time), I suppose that they are the product of some television series plus the attempt to fill a somewhat missing local identity, I plan to get back in this subject since, for the many places I've spotted, it is a somewhat recurring, and relatively new, theme in garden architecture in north Italy. More or less the time of the first appearances of rock decorations coincides with the diffusion of satellite tv with his load of documentaries.