Food, drink, film and other random thoughts from The Lone Star State.

Monday, January 08, 2007


Off to Fort Worth again to get a bit of culture. This time a visit to the Modern Art Museum to see the Hiroshi Sugimoto photography exhibit. What an incredible eye he has for light and space.

The installation covers most of the second story and its broken up into themes. I liked the diorama sequence. You remember dioramas, those cheesy installations in natural history museums usually intended to teach you the progression of man throughout history. Or some other crap like that. What Sugimoto did was visit a handful of natural history museums and photograph their dioramas. What I found interesting about this sequence was that the photographs look more real than the actual subjects. Its more a context mind-game, you automatically believe the photograph is real since it is one-dimensional and still, where as the 3 dimensional diorama you view while in real-time motion looks all kinds of fake. Seems backwards, doesn't it?

Hall Of 33 Bays - Hiroshi Sugimoto

This was my favorite photo. Its a shot he took inside of a Buddhist temple in Tokyo. He had to go through all kinds of hoops to be allowed to take this one photo, but what a stunning one it is. Its hard to describe the display and you cannot get a feel for its impact from this photo. It stands in a dimly-lit room by itself, a dozen or so spots hit it from all angles. Its height is only about 18 inches but its width is about 40 feet. It looks like a hall of mirrors when you look at it dead on. The rows of Buddhas change form as you walk from end to end, at each end the subject itself fades and a sequential and infinite "V" pattern emerges.

Elephants - Chinatsu Ban

The other artist on display was Chinatsu Ban. This artist did not speak to me. The paintings and 'sculptures' look like cutesy Hello Kitty animals colliding with Grace Slick acid trip. I would call it motionless anime but I like anime, so I won't call it that. A patron next to me was overwhelmed by Ban's creations, saying they were the height of creativity.

It takes all kinds.

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Blogger purpletwinkie said...

Yeah, the elephants don't do it for me either. It does take all kinds, but that is a good thing :)

Sounds like you're having a great trip!

11:22 AM

Blogger purpletwinkie said...

I guess "trip" may not be appropriate since FW is more like a "skip, jump". ;)

11:23 AM

Blogger Jim said...

I always like my trips (my skip jumps) to FW :)

12:49 PM

Blogger john said...

I have always envied those with an eye for photography. Such a talent to be able to tell a story with a photograph.
I took a class during college--but my photographs spoke to no one.

2:22 PM

Blogger Jim said...

John, I think my photos are like that too. Sometimes they speak to me, but often its in a language I dont understand :)

5:26 PM


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