Wednesday, November 28, 2007

FALLING MAN IS ON THE BEACH



With the Jackanory out of town I guess someone has to step up to the plate, especially with his Master's Voice in town. Richard Misrach spoke on his newly released book ON THE BEACH at Strand bookstore tonight. He was wonderfully eloquent, very forthright about his new use of digital manipulation, his newly acquired method of cropping for the book and the prints, and in his explanation of the work in general. As I said in the previous post, from what I had seen of this new project, I wasn't too jazzed. Of course the beauty of the composition, the light, you name it, all there in spades but the subject matter I find only vaguely interesting. Well the man himself stood up and explained that all of this work came from his fear and alienation after 9/11. That the singular humans floating above and within the abyss were metaphors for that ugly day seven years ago, and for life in general. Free falls, fleeing, drowning, escaping, all the movement within the frame can in some way be traced back to images we have seen in the media from that September day. OK. Enough said. As my wife said everyone owns 9/11 in his or her own way, process it how you will. I think everyone was a little stunned at the admission as the Q&A was a little week to say the least. The title comes from a post WWII book of the same name where the world is annihilated by a nuclear explosion. That was the serious part of the night, now the lowdown. They wheeled the books in on carts; you could extend the Great Wall with size and the amount. The line for signings was quite long but I figured lets do it, he's here and the book itself looks very impressive. I'm getting antsy in the wait; the wife needs both a drink and her dinner and who jumps the line for the autograph, in true NYC 1980's fashion, none other than Sylvia Plachy. My one is ready to rip her a new one, hypoglycemia kicking in and considering Sylvia's abysmal display on the ovation show I was about to let her do it. But as I got my signed copy and handshake, I was able to deftly move away the wife from the oblivious Plachy and swiftly leave the premises. I could see others in the line beginning to fume as she for the second time hogged the limelight with the maestro. We then went to our fave Cafe Loup on 13th St and had soup.

4 comments:

Erik Dalzen said...

I had a different take on the presentation. I would love to hear you thoughts on it, here.

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Erik Dalzen said...

Do you remember the term he used for digital manipulation. He said something really odd, that he probably made up, but I can't for the live of me remember what is was. It was a very pretty term for it, like "electronic massaging" or something.

The Gorbott said...

per one of your earlier posts, this might interest you if you haven't seen it already. i agree with your friends comments about it.

http://rsizr.com/

it is a free online application that allows you to play around with seam carving.