Rua Direita. Tiradentes, MG-Brazil. March 2017.
New topographics of the interior of São Paulo state, Brazil.
From my brand new series (under construction – January/2022) called: fotoGRAPHICS: diptychs that are intended to show “fragmentation …. recreation of the visible world in a game of lines, lights and shadows …. abstractionism and surrealism … geometrization of motifs … graphics”.
Why do we do so many self-portraits? Are we photographing who we are, who we were or who we want to be? Would these photographic images that we generate be, nothing more, and for one or several reasons, the specters of the people we were, who we are or who we will be one day be? Maybe self-portraits represent more ‘the other side of the coin’ or how authentic or inauthentic we are… how mutants we are… or how nomadic we are… how wanderers we were, are and will be?
“MAKE IT NEW” (Ezra Pound – 1885–1972)
This phrase, so to speak, refers to Ezra Pound’s modernist imperative in his eponymous 1934 collection of essays.
This ‘slogan’ urges the writer to create from the material of the artwork that is distinctly innovative.
The idea behind this ‘slogan’ is, for me, fully desirable in photography.
It’s a fun game. However, how much are we ourselves when we photograph ourselves? That’s a very difficult question to answer…
For those who don’t know, Kubrick, the great filmmaker who has an (almost) unequaled career as a film-maker (of so many classics from the big screen that I abstain from writing about here) started his career as a photojournalist. And in this career he was already brilliant.
I was given a gift by one of my three children on one of my recent birthdays with the great book (in physical terms, size and weight even, and intellectual, content) called “Through a Different Lens: Photographs by Stanley Kubrick” which, strongly , I recommend for your library. This work shows photographs of a guy who was still a teenager (17 years old) and there were already clear signs of a great photographic sensitivity when he worked for Look magazine and of the great filmmaker he would become.
The photos of myself that I have collected and present below are my readings in an attempt to follow in Kubrick’s footsteps. They are nothing but attempts to emulate this great master for me. But I like them.
I wrote this short text not based on deep knowledge of Kubrick’s work because I’m far from having it, but much more guided by my admiration for the work of this great artist and the emotion that pictures of him make me feel.
First, and perhaps the main feature of the photographer Kubrick: the dramatic light in high contrast, an authentic feature of the ‘film noir’ that I find simply adorable. In many of his photographs there are fantastic guidelines and vanishing points, impressive and beautiful compositions, even in the presence of various ‘subjects’. Some of them have brilliant triangular compositions and are of great depth.
In the photographs of several ‘subjects’, the strength and beauty of people’s bodily gestures is remarkable, sometimes collective hand gestures, for example, which makes me think that Kubrick – in addition to being a great filmmaker who years later would become – he was, in addition to being a great photographer, a great conductor, who, as such, knew how to create such precise and instant empathy with the people portrayed who offered him such natural, expressive and poetic gestures.