Alfred Stieglitz movie responds


The relationship of photography and the arts is one of different paths leading to the same goals. The interesting difference between these two paths is the difference in difficult of personal advancement, one the main arguments against photography as an art is that anyone can take a picture however for someone to be able to imbue emotions or greater meaning takes similar if not more artistic skill.

This is where the difference lies photography has much lower barrier to entry but at the cost of a steep incline to advance from merely reproducing images from the world. A good analogy is of Go and Chess, it takes very little time to learn how all the pieces move in Chess it would be easy for a beginner to play with a cheat sheet of how the pieces nearby, where Go is just placing stones and knowing the removal rules to just get to the level of can play. However, the climb to pro is what is really interesting for someone to become a profession Chess player they must study moves the game becomes not a game of understanding but rather remembering the previously carved out moves and not till you are a pro does making up moves return to the game. Go on the other hand does have set plays you can learn to become better but there is also another portion to truly learning Go understanding how to form shapes and learning how the game flows which creates a much smoother curve in mastering the game.

Having a smoother curve towards mastery gives people a through line of struggling to make a style that is theirs alone. So since photography has a much sharper curve it leads to more people getting stuck at bottlenecks of understanding which lends itself to a culture that believes it’s just not a fit media for art when that is misnomer created by the large difference in difficulty to do and the difficulty to make art.

In the movie there was this piece where it was just the image of arms in the pose of reaching around their back with the appearance of working the latches of a bra and this kind of piece always strikes me, where a uniquely female moment is captured even though this particular piece is more focused in the viewing of this kind action.

I find it ironic that Georgia O’keeffe in response to Freidan interpretation of her works by critics to do painting of close ups of flowers. The one I am referring to was a piece that was a warm pinks and red flower that was symmetrical and had petals that folded in such a way to give a cavernous feel to the center of the flower, this may of not be the greats of subject matter to avoid the Freidan commentary.

The picture Stieglitz took on that was more about design the one where there was a man with white suspenders had an odd story behind it. There was a sort of mythical aspect to the story of how Alfred Stieglitz had time to run back to his room for his camera and only having only one shot at getting the picture.


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