“Because it is there”

September 24, 2021  •  1 Comment

21-09-21 6-15 AM 0011“Because it is there”Copyright 2021 Paul Grayson AMDG

At the risk of committing modern art heresy, I have to confess that I am borrowing Mallory’s words before his ill-fated attempt on Mount Everest in 1924, in order to convey why I felt obliged to get up at 5am to photograph Christo’s posthumous installation on the Arc de Triomphe. It is fun, different and needs to be recorded, but is it great art? Not for me, I regret to say.

I studied it for several hours, particularly since I was settled in one place taking long exposures, which left a lot of time to gaze at it, as the light morphed from night, through twilight to dawn. I had observed the long, complex and structurally dangerous preparations needed to install frames on the building to protect the statuary from the heavy, covering and I wondered if it made sense to take those risks, just for a temporary “installation”. That knowledge generated a prejudice which made it difficult for me to be objective about the aesthetic.

The result of all the above was that I found it interesting, but not artistic enough to justify an unnecessary disruption to an existing piece of art. I am innately uninterested in “conceptual” art. If a thing needs to be explained in order for it to be appreciated, it has failed at the first hurdle for me. I have to experience it’s value personally, without it having to be explained to me.

The artist Christo seems to have been sincere, with high integrity, as evidence by his Foundation’s private funding of this enormously expensive event. I wish them well. 

Settings

Camera: Nikon D850

Lens: Nikon PC-E Nikkor 24 mm f/3.58D ED

Drive Mode: Bulb

Focal Length: 24 mm 

Focus Mode: Manual assisted by Focus Peaking in Live View

Aperture: f/16

Shutter Speed: 25 seconds

Exposure Mode: Auto

Exposure Compensation: +0.7 EV

Metering: Pattern

ISO Sensitivity: 64

Format: Raw

Mounted on Tripod

Place : Place Charles de Gaulle, Paris

Year: 2021

Copyright Paul Grayson 2021 All Rights Reserved

 


Comments

Eric Bontemps(non-registered)
J'aime le côté massif et imposant que tu as réussi à rendre. Les lignes des phares des voitures apportent un plus à la photo (dommage qu'elles ne sont pas symétriques).
J'aime beaucoup les autres photos de l'arc dans ton site.Le côté massif et imposant est encore mieux rendu.
Quand à savoir si c'est de l'art ou pas, est-ce vraiment important ? Ce qui compte c'est l'émotion que procure l'oeuvre. Et ici ça fonctionne pour moi.
Merci en tout cas d'avoir partagé cette installation.
Le côté éphémère de l'installation devrait réconcilier les pour et les contre.
Si tu t'es levé si tôt et si tu as passé autant de temps à le photographié, peut-être que tu n'y es pas complètement insensible.
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