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Birthday Musings 12/19/13

I start to feel like the last man standing in my section of the field. Many of those who started writing about photography as critics around the time I did or over the next decade have pretty much stopped, some of them quite a while back: Andy Grundberg, Vicki Goldberg, Chuck Hagen, Ben Lifson, Shelley Rice, Max Kozloff, Sally Eauclaire, Tony Bannon, Ingrid Sischy, others. [...]

Return of the Prodigal

I’ve begun to consider the possibility that my brain does manage to wrap itself around these evolutionary shifts in digital technology without extreme difficulty. Which in turn suggests that perhaps this recurrent process helps to keep my brain active and young (or, more precisely, youth-like) by pushing me to learn new skills, to replace old habits with new or revised ones, and in one way or another to get some exercise for the mind. In short, I’ve begun to weigh the mental-health benefits of living la vida digital, with its steady reconfiguring of my neural pathways. [...]

2012: That Was The Year That Was

Preoccupation with curation and management of “The Silent Strength of Liu Xia,” the touring exhibition of 26 photos by the dissident Chinese photographer, artist, and poet, also included design, publication, and content development of a substantial website for that project. That led to my putting various plans for this blog on hold. I have nothing else of that magnitude on the runway, so I’m returning to those ideas with renewed energy. [...]

Birthday Musings 12/19/12

My wetware may have undergone some retrogressive modifications, or stabilized itself in what (by current standards of the speed of technological evolution) would be considered low gear. This leaves me less than ideally positioned for life amidst the suddenly emergent “Internet of Things” (IoT), in which I’m apparently considered a “digital immigrant” rather than a “digital native.” [...]

Dog Day Afternoons: Bits & Pieces (3)

Late last year I gave a talk in London, “Dinosaur Bones: The End (and Ends) of Photo Criticism,” in which, among other things, I bemoaned the fact that the newspaper and magazine industry has begun to replace specialized critics grounded in the visual arts (like me) with “cultural journalists,” generalists with no depth of knowledge [...]