Sometime first impressions are what count. New York is a hectic, tiring city. It remouves from human relationships things that are unessential. Space is a luxury in Manhattan. Thanks to a very efficient and dirty subway (at least when they aren’t fixing it), commuters from nearby boroughs are able to travel every day into the Big Apple. Sometimes the cars are for them comfortable places where to close their eyes and leave behind the frenetic pace of the city.
I also fell asleep in a subway carriage after a tiring day. It was summer 2013, and I found myself at an unknown terminus of a subway line I did not know. It was three o’clock in the morning, but I had recoverd a bit of my strenght after my healthy short nap. At that point, I found myself awakened in a distant and unknown place. There are subway lines that end dozens of miles from Manhattan.
This dimension involved me immediately a cause of its time lag before and after a nap, a time suspended between two places like in an airplane flight, and because of its inactive time spent travelling. I had come to New York to move in. The ICP accepted my application for an internship on their museum collections. I also had to contribute on the blog “Fans in a Flash Bulb” using the photographic material of the ICP’s collection. I wanted to explore everything, but time was short and I was extremely busy adapting. Writing in English was challenging, still it is. Moreover, I wanted my posts to have an international angle and to be contemporary. I spent evenings exploring online ICP’s collection and thinking what I wanted to point out or write about. So, my spare time was often dedicated to going this and writing. It seemed soon very difficult to pursuit any photo projects. What could I do? I soon realized that the time spent in the subway was the only spare time I had. My project was born. There are my first impressions of New York, where in winter sometimes you prefer walking down in the subway a cause of the cold weather. They are pictures made and stolen with my iphone. They are marked by the sounds of the doors that close the wagons. I had to be fast shooting because most of the time the passengers opened their eyes to check the stations. I let you open your eyes on my sight and my photos.
Sleeping in the subway, New York 2015 Continue reading
A volte sono le prime impressioni, quelle che contano. New York è una città frenetica, stancante, si sa. Elimina dai rapporti umani le cose che non sono essenziali, fino a rimanere scarnificati.
Lo spazio a Manhattan è un lusso costosissimo e i commuters provenienti dai vicini Borroughs, grazie ad una efficientissima rete metropolitana, sono tantissimi. A volte le carrozze sono per loro, non dico giacigli, ma confortevoli situazioni dove chiudere gli occhi e lasciarsi alle spalle i ritmi frenetici della town….
Mi sono addormentata anche io in una carrozza della subway, stravolta dalla stanchezza del giorno. Era estate, e mi sono ritrovata ad un capolinea di una linea della metropolitana che non conoscevo. Erano le tre di notte, a quel punto, ma finalmente avevo recuperato un po’ delle mie forze, dopo una sana pennichella notturna. Ti puoi ritrovare in posti lontani e sconosciuti addormentandoti. Ci sono linee che terminano a decine di chilometri da Manhattan.
Questa dimensione sospesa tra due luoghi e da una dimensione attiva delle persone mi ha coinvolto subito. Ero arrivata a New York per trasferirmi e avrei voluto esplorare tutto, ma l’International Center of Photography aveva accettato la mia application per un tirocinio sulle collezioni fotografiche del loro museo. Inoltre dovevo collaborare al blog “Fans in a Flash Bulb” scrivendo e utilizzando il materiale fotografico del loro archivio. Scrivere in inglese per me era impegnativo. Inoltre decidere argomenti, possibilmente a carattere internazionale e con una presa sul contemporaneo, e conoscere tutto il loro materiale mettendolo in risalto mi prendeva molto tempo. Avevo accesso on line al loro archivio, così molto del mio tempo libero lo passavo a scrivere, correggere e visualizzare l’archivio. Addio tempo libero. Addio ogni progetto di foto. Cosa mi rimaneva? Il tempo passato negli spostamenti in metro.
Così nasce il mio progetto. Queste sono le prime impressioni di una città come New York, in cui in inverno a volte preferisci camminare nei sotterranei a causa del freddo. Sono foto fatte con l’iphone. Scatti rubati a passeggeri. Segnati dalla fretta e dal campanello di chiusura delle porte dei vagoni. Scatti veloci, perche il più delle volte i passeggeri aprono gli occhi alle fermate per controllare le stazioni. Lascio a voi la possibilità di aprire gli occhi sul mio sguardo.
The summer is still here. Eight months have gone away (where did they go then?) and very soon the fall will be back. This made me think about all these pictures in the subway. I have a lot of them, mostly not organized.
I don’t know why I was focused only on this. At the end is a sad story, not so funny. Not even really original. There are a lot of photographers that have already done this (worth to mention Bruce Davidson “Subway” first, but Weegee too!)
Working at ICP I met a friend, NIK, she printed several pictures for ICP’s exhibitions and she already photographed the same subject in b/w. http://www.randomnumber11.org/1489.html
In addition, before I left Rome in December 2012, I met a photographer during the Festival di Fotografia. His name is Nicolas Sanin (http://www.nicolassanin.com/). In July, we met again by chance in the subway in New York. Nicolas was in New York preparing his exhibition “The Reflex Project in New York City”. So, I think and I believe in coincidences, but I also believe in analyze them.
I generally find all the pictures taken in the subway realistic and a bit depressing… but at the end inspiring! I like to take pictures without knowing the reason. Even if it is methodically obsessive and recurring. At the end there is often a hidden reason, if you search it. It could be only something inspiring you in the way you like to show them or something different. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed them… 🙂
My posts in ICP’s blog
You know… sometimes working take your time and I haven’t blogged a lot recently. But Spring is here and maybe a new season… Meanwhile this is what I wrote for ICP’s blog.
My post in Fans in a Flashbulb