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Ends and Odds Encore

Wearing Sadakichi’s Hat

Last week I finally got to do something I’ve planned for years: have some pictures made of myself wearing Sadakichi Hartmann’s hat.

That calls for some explanation.

Scion of a German father and a Japanese mother, Sadakichi Hartmann (1867-1944) was born on an island in Nagasaki harbor. His mother died […]

Spring Fever 2015: Bits & Pieces

We’ve become the first culture to produce substantially more artists with professional aspirations than our system can possibly absorb. Though more egalitarian than most gatekeeping systems, the photo portfolio review system enables entry to a few while feeding the hopes of the many — “American Idol” writ small, if you will. No harm done, I suppose, and it keeps them off the streets. […]

Time Capsule 1974: Collier’s Encyclopedia Yearbook

I took the assignment of writing this annual round-up of events in the photo world as an opportunity to create a time capsule of sorts for users of Collier’s Encyclopedia. I just came across the one that appeared 40 years ago in the 1975 edition of the Yearbook, synopsizing the year 1974 (and the last months of of 1973). Here it is. […]

RICO Case Against Ferguson, MO

Today, March 17, 2015, at We the People — The White House, I initiated a petition to the Obama Administration to “order the Dept. of Justice to initiate a RICO case against the city government, courts, and police force of Ferguson, MO.” […]

Cabin Fever 2015: Bits & Pieces (2)

I confess, with a shudder but of my own volition, that I agree with the Fox News decision to publish “Healing the Believers’ Chests,” the complete 22:34-minute ISIS video of the burning alive of captured Jordanian pilot Muadh al-Kasasbeh. I watched it there — not for thrills, but because (a) as a citizen of the country that ISIS has declared its mortal enemy I want to know the threat that confronts us, and (b) I feel obligated as a critic to actually experience work in its entirety, no matter how difficult its content, before considering and commenting on it. […]