Wednesday, 25 March 2020

Framing what pleases my eyes

Mishima, Japan, April 2019

What we can more or less decide in life is where to turn our attention to. Mine has shifted from what the media think is important to what I deem relevant — what I see, what I hear, and what I feel. Also: Don't get too attached, was one of the Buddhist lessons that I thought to have learned during my time in Thailand in the 1990s — only to forget it again.

After writing on photography for close to twenty years, I've started to regularly (almost daily) take pictures — and Dorothea Lange's "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera" took on yet another meaning. Nowadays, my interest is in the surface of things, in what pleases my eyes. Richard Rorty comes to mind who once penned: "Existence with all its horrors is endurable only as an aesthetic fact."

To photograph helps me to to see what is. Nothing has to be created, it only has to be looked at and framed. Really looking at something means to calmly let things be. As St. Francis of Assisi is reported to have said. "Wear the world as a loose garment, which touches us in a few places and there lightly."

For the full text, see here

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