NICE & INTERESTING

At the end of 2012, students at SVA in a class taught by Alexandra Brez and W.M. Hunt responded to a challenge of selecting and wrtiting about "25 Great But Unknown Photographs". The contributors include Ryan Bianchi, Nick Bologna, Nick Blumenthal, Ashley East, Ashley Harte, Rachel Kessler, Arianna Meli, Estefany Molina, Monique Pelser, Lauren Poggi, Mat Sliwa, Ilona Szwarc, Shakirah Tabourn, and Francesca Tamse. The title for this site "Nice and Interesting" comes from the admonition NOT to describe anything as either nice or Interesting. Their thoughtful choices and insightful texts follow.
Sally Mann (American b. 1951), Jessie, 1984, silver print, 19 ½ x 23 ¼ inches
Selected by: Estefany Molina
Typically pictures of children taken by their mothers are reserved for the photo albums. More often they are very topical: by the kiddie pool, graduations, birthday parties. They are a record of a child’s transformation during their formative years. Sally Mann has made an art of photographing her children not solely as her offspring, but as beings in the world too. The pale, blonde androgynous girl lays relaxed in a swallowing black bed looking into the camera. Their emotion is as undecipherable as the Mona Lisa, except the child is showing too many emotions. At first she seems stoic, however the right eye seems sleepy while the left is glaring with worry; yet the eyebrow remains unwrinkled. They just keep staring, and one can’t help but stare back. It is strange to lay an innocent child amidst an expansive blackness. The deep blackness that absorbs the child and wild look of her left eye play together showing the depths of the child: the vastness of her possibilities. A child is just as complex as the tangled threads lying on Jesse’s torso. And only to their mother would they pre-reflectively reveal this sort of sincerity. Although the photograph is incredibly strong on its own, it is important to know that her mother captured it. Otherwise, it would not have been possible. Only a mother could achieve the sort of intimacy this captures.

Sally Mann (American b. 1951), Jessie, 1984, silver print, 19 ½ x 23 ¼ inches

Selected by: Estefany Molina

Typically pictures of children taken by their mothers are reserved for the photo albums. More often they are very topical: by the kiddie pool, graduations, birthday parties. They are a record of a child’s transformation during their formative years. Sally Mann has made an art of photographing her children not solely as her offspring, but as beings in the world too. The pale, blonde androgynous girl lays relaxed in a swallowing black bed looking into the camera. Their emotion is as undecipherable as the Mona Lisa, except the child is showing too many emotions. At first she seems stoic, however the right eye seems sleepy while the left is glaring with worry; yet the eyebrow remains unwrinkled. They just keep staring, and one can’t help but stare back. It is strange to lay an innocent child amidst an expansive blackness. The deep blackness that absorbs the child and wild look of her left eye play together showing the depths of the child: the vastness of her possibilities. A child is just as complex as the tangled threads lying on Jesse’s torso. And only to their mother would they pre-reflectively reveal this sort of sincerity. Although the photograph is incredibly strong on its own, it is important to know that her mother captured it. Otherwise, it would not have been possible. Only a mother could achieve the sort of intimacy this captures.

(Source: catalogue.swanngalleries.com)

Posted 1 year ago with 22 notes
Tagged with #Estefany Molina#Sally Mann#Child#Jesse#Swann Galleries#Lazy Eye#Black#Pale#Portrait#Photography#Black and White

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    Sally Mann, Jessie, 1984
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