Textures, patterns, shapes…Water!
You will have noticed that this series is named in Spanish, even though all texts here are in English. The choice was easy. Would you rather say seawater or agua de mar? The latter fills your mouth, has perfect length, not too long neither too short, and even sounds romantic, especially if pronounced by an English speaking person. On the other hand, seawater sounds like the name of a terribly ugly small village in the middle of…you name it.
Water in the sea surface is always active and that creates ever changing visual appearances. Some times it has that curvaceous character that makes it look sensual and embracing. On ocassions it looks more edgy and even shows definite geometric patterns. And very rarely, it is so flat and tranquil that it transmits the qualities of a beautiful skin. Here you can see some examples of what I’m saying. Maybe a presentation of all them together in a sort of mural would be most appropriate. It is something to be considered.
I daresay it is in Northern Spain where you will find the nicest beaches in the country. Maybe it is a little bit of a radical statement, as there are other places, like Huelva, parts of the Balearic Islands, parts of the Costa Brava…, where quality and beauty are very high too. Let us settle for the fact that I love the northern ones for their nice sand, cool breezes, good waves and lack of overwhelming crowds.
There is something very peculiar to Tuscany that you can see in some other places in Italy, but very rarely elsewhere: people sit in stone benches in the buildings facades. Those benches and buildings are very old. Nowadays you can see locals sitting and chatting. And you also see tourists and other travelers taking a rest. One can not but wonder: who has been sitting in these very same benches in the hundreds of years of their existence?
By now you may have realized that the “women” theme attracts me like honey attracts flies. So in a recent photographic trip to Tuscany with my friend and outstanding photographer Harvey Stein and a bunch of photo enthusiasts I devoted part of my efforts to that subject. The results I show here may look more than a bit heterogenous. I should say in my defence that at least they all show women, no doubt!
“Women are beautiful”. That’s how the street photography master Garry Winogrand titled his book with eighty odd images of women in 1975. So I am nearly forty years late to call my modest efforts on that theme the same. And it’s a pity, because women indeed are beautiful and that title is short, sounds whole and deep and in some way is final. So after discarding for different reasons several titles like “Women are stupendous”, “Women are fascinating” or “Women are…wow!! I decided to settle for a discrete “Women in New York”.
I must say that I find women in New York especially beautiful, energetic, brave and fascinating. And that is why I enjoy a lot making these photos. And they usually enjoy it too, to the point that quite often we have a good laugh.
A few of these women live in the Portraits and Scenes galleries but most live here, all together.
Many of the images here don’t show much of the city, if anything. I guess it is because in my quest to decipher the women (which I never achieve by far, of course!) I end up getting rid of what could constitute distractions. Maybe in the future I will make more of those photos which include the environment. I am not sure, I don’t promise anything.
It was during the festivities of San Isidro, the patron saint of Madrid. A group of students from an art center were painting on the pavement. I liked her posture, her amused look and her beautiful eyes. So I took my camera and put her into a box. I’m sure that if she saw it she would laugh and forgive me. Doesn’t look like the kind of girl who would stay for long within the box.
They were five or six of them. They were standing in the middle of the plaza, just chatting. Some girls, some boys…I asked them for permission to take their picture. Some said yes, some said no. I said: Thank you! A couple of hours later all of them were still standing there, in the middle of Plaza Benavente, chatting and letting Sunday slip by.
This series is about sadness, and some despair too. So if you don’t feel strong maybe it’s better for you to ignore it. I am putting these images up here not because I want to elicit any particular reaction from the viewer. Not even because I want to denounce a situation and try to make the world a little bit better. It’s more selfish than all that. I felt the need to make them in the first place, so I think that not showing them would be like hiding myself.
I asked her for permission to make some photos of the dog. Then I said: “Stand by your dog and let’s make a couple of pictures!” She looked at me with disbelief and surprise in her face. “Me…, me…, for what? “You’ll make a good picture, your dog and you together”. She stared at me, paused, and asked: “And what is your wife going to say when she sees the pictures?” “Well…I make many pictures, she is used to it”, I managed to reply. And we proceeded without further words.