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I'm one of five photographers with an exhibition on this "artsy" website

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RagingInMiami Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-15-06 10:25 PM
Original message
I'm one of five photographers with an exhibition on this "artsy" website
I call it "artsy" because I had to write an "artist's statement" to accompany my photos. In all my writing career, I've never written an artist statement, so I wrote mine a little different -- and longer -- than the others. I wrote it more like a magazine article.

Still, it feels good to have an artist statement. I feel like I should buy a beret or something.

Fotomission, the non-profit organization that runs the website, is known for promoting local photographers. Their mission, according to their website, is "to utilize artistic and documentary photography as a means of creating positive social change while at the same time promoting the art of photography."

In other words, they have a liberal agenda.

My exhibition is on the janitors who went on strike. Eventually, after they get more funding, my photos will be posted in a gallery where I can put price tags on them. Then I can stand around sneering while wearing my beret. I'll be sure to wear all black.

But in the meantime, the photos are on this site. Most of you have seen these pictures already, but maybe you would like to check out the other galleries. I really like Chris Gordon's exhibition. It's very colorful.

I'm Carlos Miller, by the way, for those who don't know.

http://www.fotomission.org/culturalexpressions/cultexpr...
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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 12:18 AM
Response to Original message
1. Carlos, this is just fantastic!
:toast: :applause: I look forward to the self-portrait of you, dressed all in black, with your beret rakishly tilted atop your head. That will be something to see. :)
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RagingInMiami Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 12:47 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Thanks Blue
Before I take a self-portrait dressed all in black with a beret, I would have to get drunk because I wouldn't be able to take myself seriously. But on South Beach, where this organization is based out of, they have these trendy art galleries where the artists do just that. Not these people, but other galleries.

I've always view them as posers because they seem more about projecting the image of the artist rather than projecting themselves into their art. To me, art should be an extension of the artist. I should be able to get a glimpse of the artist's soul. Shit, I should have said that in my artist statement.

But speaking of berets, this photo turned out to be one of all-time favorites. This is Feliciano Hernandez, a Cuban who came to Miami during the 1980s Mariel boatlift. I talked to him one day and he told he had been jailed in Cuba because he was a dissident. He was too outspoken.

So naturally, when the janitors went on strike, he became one of the most vocal strikers. He started wearing an SEIU beret and walking around as if he were Che Guevara. He was one of the janitors that went on a hunger strike at a tent city they set up across the university.

One night he just happened to be standing in front of the Cuban flag, which he had placed in front of his cot. I just happened to look over there and I instantly saw the picture in my head. So I told him to let me take his photo, which is rare for me. I usually just start snapping away without asking. Just get right in their face so they won't think I'm being sneaky.

When I showed him a 4 x 6 print, he loved it and asked me to make him a large copy. I made him an 8 x 12 and he was thrilled, walking around the camp showing everybody, before handing it to his wife and telling her to take it home and frame it.


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RagingInMiami Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 01:07 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Here is a larger version of Feliciano
Just so you can see the political rage in his eyes. I can totally relate to this guy.

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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 01:48 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. That is a very cool shot.
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priller Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 10:03 AM
Response to Original message
5. Very nice, Carlos!
And for a good cause. Congratulations.

I liked Chris Gordon's exhibit also. Very inspiring. Makes me want to go look around Austin for similar "urban color". Hmm............

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RagingInMiami Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. I also got inspired by Gordon's exhibit
That would be cool if you do that in Austin. I would look forward to seeing that. Remember, keep Austin weird.

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priller Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 10:27 PM
Response to Reply #7
10. You bet!
:)
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JeffR Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 11:32 AM
Response to Original message
6. Bravo!
And the other artists' stuff was well worth seeing too. Seeing the Burdines sign in one of those pics gave me a - what's the artsy term? - frisson of fond remembrance. Only an American gets nostalgic for a department store. Eh bien, c'est domage.

When I was an art critic for my university newspaper, I used to read a dozen artist's statements a week. Overall, I've never seen more words used to lesser effect, except in a Bush press conference, of course.
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RagingInMiami Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 11:59 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. It's hard to believe there is no longer a Burdines around
But that was the upscale department store when I was growing up. On my birthdays as a kid, my grandmother would always get me something from Burdines, which of course came in that fancy box with the Burdines logo.

Once I saw that box after tearing off the wrapper, I knew it was something really nice. My mom and dad would always have to "ooh" and "ah" for dramatic effect.

"Ooh, look, it's Burdines."

One year it was one of those alligator shirts that were so popular in the 1970s. Another year it was a Members Only jacket that became popular in the early 1980s.

After all, there was Burdines and there was Kmart, where most of my clothes came from.

About a year ago, after returning to Miami after a ten-year hiatus, I checked out the oldest cemetary in Miami, which is not really old for cemetary standards, but what can we expect from the youngest city in the United States?

Along with Julia Tuttle's grave, "the mother of Miami", and a few graves of other Miami pioneers, there was the grave of William Burdine, the man who started it all. Here is a brief history on the store.

http://www.fds.com/pressroom/macysflorida/about/history...
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JeffR Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-16-06 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Thanks for the link
I remember those Burdines boxes too! A guarantee of something special.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-17-06 12:41 AM
Response to Original message
11. Excellent.
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