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Jan 8Liked by Tomasz Trzebiatowski

I struggle to understand these kind of images. They seem to call out “mediocre snapshot” to my eye and, yet, joined with academic verbiage they hold some artistic reverence which garners Guggenheim Fellowships. I feel stupid or at least woefully uneducated. So I keep trying.

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James, Thank you for your comment. I had an experience that taught me nothing but patience with my responses to photos. Stephen Shore came to my photography class and while we all talked we passed 8x10 prints of his around. I didn't know anything about him, but quickly judged the photos as "Snapshots". They were dusty roads, and bits of gas stations, devoid of people. But I continued to look over the next forty minutes or so as we passed these images from hand to hand. About fifty of them, in total. As I looked at more and more of them I began to appreciate them and by the time the last few of them went from my hands to the next person's I was quite enthralled. It was also around then that I noticed something that I had not before. There was a distinct shape to the frame borders of the images that revealed to me that these were not the "snapshots" that I supposed them to be, but 8" x 10" view camera contact sheets of exquisitely framed and crafted images. In fact, the opposite of snapshots. It just took me a while to get there. I often find the same with music. Don't get it at first, but after four or five listens, I may well come around. It is how I went from loving Progressive Rock to also loving Punk.

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