Always… always remember that the reason that you initially started working was that there was something inside yourself that you felt, that if you could manifest it in some way, you would understand more about yourself and how you coexist with the rest of society.
John Peter Berger (5 November 1926 – 2 January 2017) was an English art critic, novelist, painter and poet. His novel G. won the 1972 Booker Prize, and his essay on art criticism Ways of Seeing, written as an accompaniment to a BBC series, is often used as a university text. He resided in France for over 50 years.
Last night I dreamt I was with someone. There was place, presence, appearance, lightness, intimacy even. And truth of great importance. Truth as opposed to, not lies but cowardice.
She reminded me of someone whose path crossed mine at some point, yet not. As dreams go. And there was insecurity and awkwardly phrased expressions to suffocate whatever there was.
As I asked her if she was leaving she smiled—lightly—and said that I would have to figure it out. There was a promise in it, her smile, but I couldn’t understand what she meant by it, only realize that I wouldn’t. Couldn’t. And it was sad. Enormously sad.
Bought some hope, brought it home.
Now I have hope in a cardboard box on my living room floor. Wonder if I should open it.
Sixteen years ago I drove around South Iceland and photographed. Made a few prints in a darkroom somewhere in downtown Reykjavík. Among others, one of this waterfall. Put them in envelopes and applied at art schools.
Still think about who he was and which photos he sent in an envelope the guy I met on the stairs on my way to the interview, he who sat and held his head in his hands and I never saw again while getting accepted myself, increasingly more to my surprise as time goes by and I think back on those photographs. Ohwell, #life.
(Initially written in my native language. Not my best translation.)
Looking at old negatives, since so long ago that I can hardly remember a single frame. Or was it that I don’t remember anything anymore?
- Ignorance. So embarrassing that it hurts. Not only ignorance but incapability, if that’s a word. Smallness. Helplessness.
- Perspective, tons of perspective. How things connect with one another, things and connections I had no idea about the time, stuff only time can teach. How it all began. It. Not sure if seeing it is a good thing.
- What square camera I had back then, with a separate back, running the film vertically past the frame. After much pondering I remembered the Bronica but not what it was called, the one with the focal plane shutter that went kathummmmp when fired. The one I ended up selling because I needed something better. See, ignorant.
It is, no it has some value, looking back at oneself like this. I think. That’s how I see these negs basically, as some sort of a mirror image of a former self, which has to be—to a considerable degree—what makes up the current self. Ohdear. This is beginning to sound like a country pop tune, a pretty bad one.
Anyway here’s a square photograph not taken with any of the square cameras I’ve had because I haven’t yet scanned any of them. No, it’s because the ones that I have scanned are totally uninteresting just now.
This was supposed to be the post where I went Ok, time to snap out of it. That’ll be the next one. If nothing unexpected shows up to spoil the plan.
Twelve years ago I stood here, about to pack my bags and go home. Still here.
Twelve years, 144 months. Bunch of days. A lot can happen in twelve years, a lot has. And a lot hasn’t.
It all looks real good though, on the surface. Wait, no. It doesn’t.
I’m the guy with the three rusty Saabs in the driveway. Two of them without licence plates. I always buy Saabs, they’ve proven good for me.
And the two—I’m gonna rebuild them. Gonna.