Thursday, November 10, 2011

pink; mystic heather

I came across this photograph a while back in search of pink works and was waiting for the perfect moment to write about it. Today's post is just that. You see, I have three friends who are in New York at this very moment. Well, actually two. One has just left after a four month stint at living in the Big Apple. The other two have set up shop; one indefinitely and the other calling New York home for the next year.
Tim Barber is a New York based photographer and the reason why this particular photograph has caught my attention is because of the what it stirs up in me as I look at it. New York is one of those places that EVERYONE loves, even before having visited. It has an incredibly loud history which seems to be stuck in everyones imagination and formed a sort of pseudo personal history within us all. It is the city of dreams, the place where anything can happen, where everything does happen.

I have spent three short visits to New York city and as most of you already know, I will be going to live there for six months next year. For me, any city needs to prove itself.  I'm not a person who simply falls for or adopts a common view of something. I like to experience it on my own terms, in my own way and then I will develop an opinion after I have had some sort of relationship with what ever it is; be it a city or something else.

The photograph above seems to capture a moment in a womans life of either surrender or victory.  New York is either her demon or her oyster. Is she embracing the city in communion with her successes within it or is she falling down in her failings with it? We are unsure of this womans story but the assumption is she is either about to jump to her death in surrender or she is playing with death by leaning and teasing into the city that is offering her everything she hoped for. Either ways, a feeling of danger is definitely evident.

Lately, Australians I have been talking with have asked me why I am so fascinated with America and it is simply because of it's sink or swim mentality. Here in Australia, we are a culture that is pretty laid back, floating through life as if riding in a well suspended vehicle that takes the shocks of bumps along the journey of life in it's stride, allowing for easy transitions as these bumps occur. America on the other hand, has no such journey installed for it's people. Americans ride in a vehicle with the worst suspension in the world, feeling every tiny little bump along the journey of life, changing it's course as a result. I like this feeling of unpredictability. It is what has made America so great in the past.

Cities within the States all have their own characteristics, allowing for very different experiences. New York City is a tough city, so everyone says. I am yet to experience it and develop my own opinion. I have no expectations of how my own experience of this historic, iconic place will unfold. I will find out next year when I do live there for six months and discover whether I will be feeling like I want to jump off a building in complete surrender, broken by the experience or be in complete happy communion with this 'great' city. Either ways, I know the experience of living in New York  City will be memorable and life changing, just as living in Beijing, Los Angeles and San Francisco were for me, altering the way I currently live my life and the values I currently hold true to my own experience as an artist.

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