Before I begin, I'll digress.
My son is studying Fine Arts and, after driving other occupants of the studios nuts with his spray painting last year, he's taken the more colleague friendly, but restrictive and challenging option of drawing with chalk, on a blackboard, all year this year. “Not relevant” I hear you say. True. But the next bit is, to me.
Drawing in chalk means he can reuse the same canvas over and over easily. And in the process of cleaning off one drawing, I have noticed “undrawings”. The space between, behind and within the work that grows as the work itself diminishes and disappears. In actual fact the undrawings are just as important as the drawings because they are conscious erasure of the figure that redefines the figure/ground relationship.
Back to New York.
How hard it is to do creative photography when all around you is different and noteworthy. I found myself making thoroughly representational work because what WAS carried more weight in the moment than what was evoked within me, which required time for me to process and respond because it was unfamiliar. Pauline and I came across a parade of dance and I did tourist duty, clicking away as the colour and energy swept past, group after group after group. Until I noticed what I was doing, and realised that what I really wanted to record was the undrawings.
The space between.
And the wonderful energy.
And then the people started to speak.