Friday, November 8, 2013

Rawiya - She Who Tells a Story

  During my recent visit to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston I got to see this amazing exhibit of photographs by Iranian women photographers.  It was breathtaking and incredibly moving.

   The image on the left is a detail of an immense triptych that greets the viewer when you enter the exhibit.  What looks like mosaic and beads is actually gold and silver shell casings.

   The image on the right was equally large.  You think you are looking at earrings but you are gazing down the barrel  of a gun.   I had to try and record what I saw so I could share it with you and all I had, of course, was my cell phone but I think you can certainly get the feeling of the powerful and yet subtle photographs.  The stories these women tell is compelling and thought provoking.

   I loved the way some of the photographers wrote directly on the finish print.

   As a contemplative photographer who writes a lot about my images, the idea of writing on them was inspiring.  I might experiment with this idea in a book project.

    I think combining the words with the image makes the photograph into more than what it first appears. In an art process that is very mechanical, this simple act of physically writing on the finished print engages the artist/photographer with the artifact/photograph.  In fact, all the photographs in this exhibit were, I felt, documentary photography as a fine art.  Even if you didn't know the back story of these pieces, they would stand alone as masterful works of art.

   Inspiration can come at any time and through ways you couldn't imagine.  That's why I encourage you to seek out exhibits of all sorts.   Here is link to the exhibit and for those of you within driving distance of Boston, it is up through January.  Do try to see it, you won't be disappointed.

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