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Shenzhen Economic Daily Interview, 2007 (b)

From a structural or theoretical standpoint, I think that China does not at present have a clear sense of what constitutes the actual history of photography in China. On the one hand, this has a certain liberating effect, leaving photographers and artists seemingly beholden to no particular traditions. On the other hand, it leaves them rootless and disconnected from the past and their own culture’s photographic history. […]

Shenzhen Economic Daily Interview, 2007 (a)

I have always imagined my own “average reader” as a reasonably educated and literate member of the general public, broadly interested in cultural issues. Of course I sometimes write specifically for, and am read by, people who work professionally in the arts, and for the audience for contemporary art. But I would not want to have my own writing restricted to that segment of the population, and I don’t think the public discussion of photography should be limited to its function as an art form. […]

What Makes One Photo Worth $2.9 Million? (2007)

[Checking the news this past December 12, I learned from Forbes that “On December 9 PRNewswire announced that Australian photographer Peter Lik sold a photograph entitled ‘Phantom’ for a record-setting $6.5 million. ‘Phantom,’ now the world’s most expensive photograph ever sold, was shot in a subterranean cavern in Arizona’s Antelope Canyon.” (See Rachel Hennessey’s report, […]

Straight Through to China (2)

On August 1, 2009, Anna’s birthday and Melville’s too, I got to read the role of Starbuck in OutLOUD’s yearly rendering of Moby Dick, with Anna present in the audience for the first time, and to dedicate my share of the program to her. As I did, I held in my mind that image of her as a precocious girlchild, sneaking under the locked gate to read this book in Chinese and hearing it now for the first time in English, read by her husband. I felt part of some great circle of connectedness. […]

Straight Through to China (1)

I haven’t seen the new romantic comedy featuring Drew Barrymore and Justin Long, Going the Distance. However, as it happens, I’ve spent some time working on the treatment of a script that’s even more far-fetched, so to speak, hoping that Hollywood’s ready for it. […]