Tour de MANHATTAN – Simon Garnier

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Tour de Manhattan – Simon Garnier – New York City, Usa

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I took this picture in one of my Manhattan’s photo walks. It was toward the end of the day, when I usually take my best pictures. I noticed the toys selling guy from 20-30 meters away and this gave me time to observe the biker going around between the legs of pedestrians. As I approached, I knew I wanted to take a picture of that scene, but I needed something more than the toy itself. After 2-3 minutes wait a man, with gilded sandals and shiny green toenails, walked toward the toy. That was the element I was missing. I quickly crouched down and snapped a first picture, but I knew the angle wasn’t good enough. So I decided to put my camera closer to the ground. I only had 1 second to do it, no time to look through the viewfinder: I aimed instinctively.

The picture is a little bit fuzzy because of that (and because it was a bit dark too), but I think it gives the whole scene a sort of illusion of movement that completes the story well.

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Street photography requires fast judgement of people movements, quick decisions and, sometimes, unorthodox camera positions. Not to be missed: framing skills and vision of how the settings and characters will compose by themselves. Garnier gather all of these qualities into a single shot. Strong colors and the original toy stand out in a surprisingly interesting background, where lines and chewing gum residues add an intense city texture.

AMATO OPERA house – BEL CANTO on the Bowery, New York

 

Only 103 seats and all with a perfect view and acoustics, hand painted scenery and originally design costumes, singers and actors that perform for the great passion of music and bel canto, not for money.

Amato Opera house has entertained opera lovers for 61 years of uninterrupted production. Founded in 1948 by husband and wife team Anthony and Sally Amato, grew to become not only a must-go theatre where to appreciate opera in NYC’s cultural scene, but also a reference point for theatre students and singers, thanks to the enthusiasm, creativity and energy of Mr. and Mrs. Amato.

The Marriage of Figaro by Rossini, was chosen in May, 2009, as it started 61 years before at the auditorium of Our Lady of Pompeii church on Bleecker and Carmine Sts., to end an uninterrupted production. Last permanent home was at 319 Bowery, in the East Village.

HAPPY hours – street DRUNKARDS in New York

I used to live in Hell’s Kitchen, NY, before the New Times Square induced cleansing. Drunkards below my windows and drugs dealing at nighttime.

FIGHT club – PEACEFUL Sunday afternoon

They look like you and me: harmless. But you don’t want to get into a fight with them for just no reason. They know boxing, wrestling, kicking, judo, karate and you name it. They’re nice, ordinary guys, they do business and smile, chat and shake hands and like to be photographed, outside the ring. But once they’re in the ring, the hidden beast surfaces, feeding on your blood and the crowd’s roars at the smashing sound of fists hitting your face and breaking your nose. You eventually give up and the fight is over. Winner or loser, it doesn’t make any difference since there’s no money to win, but a sort of inner relief. Yes, because finally you felt alive, away from the supermarket aisle wanderer, from the cubicle dweller, from the diaper changer. And tomorrow is Monday, a week away from another peaceful Sunday afternoon.

Fight Club – the movie, with Brad Pitt and Edward Norton.

cold, BRUTAL, dark, PHOTOGENIC – Winter in New York

Obvious talks about the brutality of New York’s winters, I definitely agree, but what about the beauty?

NELLA PANCIA DELLA BESTIA – un libro di Michele Molinari


NELLA PANCIA DELLA BESTIA

Dritte e rovesci sulla vita a New York

Collana Le Tracce n°65, 216 pagine.

Cda & Vivalda Editori 2009.

Dodici mesi di cronache e passioni di un italiano che racconta come si vive, si mangia, si dorme, si legge, si fa sesso, si parla, si litiga, si fa sport, si fa politica, non si fa nulla nella Grande Mela, senza mai di scordarsi di confrontare la vita a New York con quella quotidiana di casa nostra.

Nato a Mantova nel 1960, Michele Molinari è giornalista e fotografo free lance. Prima di iniziare a scrivere ha studiato ingegneria e biologia, ama le grandi città ma non può fare a meno degli spazi aperti. Ha vissuto per un quinto della sua vita a New York, dove si è occupato di viaggi, stili di vita e fatti di costume, scrivendo per le principali case editrici italiane.

 

Presentazioni e recensioni; le recensioni su aNobii.

Compra il libro da Feltrinelli, su bol.it; oppure ordinalo nella tua libreria.


FLOPHOUSE – a photo book by HARWEY WANG

FLOPHOUSE

Life on the Bowery

photography by Harvey Wang, text by David Isay and Stacy Abramson

“This book takes you places you don’t want to enter, to people you don’t want to meet, to lives you think you don’t want to live – and makes you rethink all your assumptions. It reveals the tremendous strenght and humanity ot those who are usually ignored. And as you pay attention, your own humanity expands.”

Susan Stamberg, special correspondent, NPR

Flophouse is not a place where you want to live. You might get a Manhattan address for something like 10-15 bucks per night, but it’s not glamorous at all. You’ll be on the Bowery, with no A/C, with bedbugs, with a cubicle as a bedroom and chicken wire up above your head to give you privacy. But you’ll still hear farts, burps and nightmare’s screams from your fellows: the flop mates.

So, why do you want to live in a Flophouse? I don’t really want to go there, but, was it that your lady kicked you out of the shack ‘cause you were drunk all the time, or you couldn’t stand the Midwest any longer and then found that New York fucking City is too much for you, or you want to feel totally free since nobody gives you a damn on the Bowery.

Come, come on here, come to rest on the warm and soft belly of the City, come to where you’ll be yourself, time stands still and life get suspended.

And be nice, pose for the photographer. He’s shooting faces, places. He’s shooting souls throught the eyes, he’s telling your life in a pic, he’s making it rich and interesting. Because, you know, you might be a flop, but you have full hands of humanity to give.

Michele Molinari

all images © Harvey Wang

Buy Flophouse.

FOLLOWING Garry Winogrand

I was walking along Fifth Ave and suddenly remembered some photos by Garry Winogrand.

“Photography is not about the thing photographed. It is about how that thing looks photographed.” GW

Photography booksby Garry Winogrand.
Great American photographers from the 60s and 70s: The Last Photographic Heroes.

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