About a year ago, I had the opportunity to visit the
with my husband to see the Robert Frank exhibit, Looking In: Robert Frank's The Americans. What a great exhibit it was! Robert Frank is a living photographic legend and a master photographer. His photographs documented America and what it meant to be American. The prints themselves were beautifully printed and simply presented. Those photographs historically depicted an America of a time gone by. They revealed to the viewer looking in, a historical pictorial account of America. As I viewed each of the great images presented, I could not help but wonder about the people in the photographs? Who were they? What kind of lives did they lead? Where are they now?
I came upon the "Barnacle Shoes" in the photograph above as I was walking along the shore. I had to stop and make the photograph. Looking at these old shoes, I could not help but wonder who they had belonged to. Who had worn the old shoes? Were these shoes from a foreign land and just now washing up on our shores or were they simply discarded, forgotten, or just left behind? The more I looked at the shoes, the more questions I had. I look at these old shoes as Robert Frank must have looked at his subjects when photographing
. I am looking as the observer documenting and asking questions of what I see. I am choosing to make a photograph of barnacle shoes that have washed ashore. It is those of us who are photographic observers and documentarists, who constantly strive to show others that which most people, simply walk by and disregard. Perhaps we too should be more like Robert Frank and "Look In" to our world and help document our pictorial history. Document those things that are important to you and you hold close to your heart-your family, your children, your pets, your loved ones. Document your history so that you will always remember.
Until next time.