Visual not Verbal!

I celebrated birthday 55 yesterday, and had a glorious fun day enjoying life. To all who were a part of my beautiful day, thank you!!

We had what seems to be the last of a long series of perfect autumn days: blue skies, orange foliage, gentle temperatures just crisp enough to energize. The dogs and I have enjoyed splendid walks all the past 2 weeks.

Yesterday I really felt alive, and grateful for it.

I’ve been drinking in the visual world, walking, breathing and taking photos, but not feeling any movement to the writing Muse! My commitment to writing a blog a day is slipping, and I’m missing days. Ah, I have become an object lesson. Let me go back and read the post on prioritizing….

But, in the spirit of Visual not Verbal, I responded to a photography exhibit I saw yesterday by taking the camera on my walk. The show is The Pond, and the Smithsonian Museum of American Art. They are photographs by John Gossage of an insignificant pond he discovered along the highway on his commute between work and home. I was intrigued by the idea of waste landscapes of suburbia, but I didnt realize that these were 25 years old and the book was being reissued. Nor did I know about the tie-ins with Thoreau and other narrative landscape photographers.

It was so lovely to see real silver gelatin prints, black and white subtle clarity and silvery warmth. My mind infuses prints like that with colour. Gossage makes you look at the unremarkable, the ugly, the nowhere land. In fact he says he wanted to document “pastoral violence.” Some were puctuated with litter and debris, or a glimpse of a building in the distance. There is the familiar sandy ground, still water, and viney scrub of southern Maryland. But as I view the show, 52 photos in a particular order, I can see that the onslaught of algae and litter has become so much worse in the past 20 years.  There is duckweed on this pond, not the veils of radioactively green algae that chokes such watery places today.

I’ll post a link to my visual response soon.

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