sábado, 31 de janeiro de 2015

questões de foot-ball 1



MIRANDA, Catarina - Questões de Foot-Ball 1. Correio do Minho, n.º 9537 (31 jan. 2015), p. 30.


sábado, 24 de janeiro de 2015

nos Remédios [29]





MIRANDA, Catarina - Nos Remédios [29]. Correio do Minho, n.º 9530 (24 jan. 2015), p. 30.



quarta-feira, 21 de janeiro de 2015

roteiro oitocentista virtual


[roteiro da história da fotografia eborense]





Já há muito que somos fãs do Arquivo Fotográfico Municipal de Évora.
Agora que descobrimos este roteiro virtual, ainda mais...
Fica aqui o link, 


"A história da fotografia em Évora foi o pretexto para a realização de um ROTEIRO oitocentista virtual pelos principais locais a ela ligados.
Vários são os espaços, no centro histórico da cidade de Évora, que constituem marcas territoriais da introdução e desenvolvimento da prática fotográfica.
Vários são os locais que, discreta e anonimamente, encerram a memória de uma prática, ela própria, testemunho do pulsar de uma época.
É possível encontrar uma lógica de localização geográfica dos referidos locais: nos primeiros anos (1840-60) a sua escolha obedeceu à proximidade de estalagens/hospedarias onde os primeiros fotógrafos itinerantes se instalavam [...] posteriormente, com a abertura dos primeiros estúdios, alguns deles temporários, a sua situação passa a situar-se ou no principal eixo comercial da cidade [...] ou junto aos principais centros de sociabilidade [...].
Propõe-se, assim, a realização de um circuito que, partindo da Praça do Giraldo, terminará no Arquivo Fotográfico da Câmara Municipal de Évora, onde se poderá visitar um pequeno Núcleo Museológico e conhecer o trabalho de preservação fotográfica que aí é desenvolvido.
O circuito representará, paralelamente, uma oportunidade para apreciar zonas do centro histórico menos conhecidas [...]"


[sem sombra de dúvidas, mais uma iniciativa de excelência do Arquivo Fotográfico da Câmara Municipal de Évora]



sábado, 17 de janeiro de 2015

as fontes discretas

já no distante ano de 2009, Maria do Carmo Serén publicou um artigo sobre a minha tese de mestrado, a que chamou de "as fontes discretas", no antigo blogue da Associação Portuguesa de Arte Fotográfica [que foi encerrado e que agora vive aqui]
um artigo lindo lindo lindo, que talvez por vergonha tenha mantido até hoje discretamente como um segredo só meu. hoje já não tenho qualquer "questão" em mostrá-lo ao mundo e só tenho de agradecer as gentis palavras desta "menina" que muito admiro. obrigada Maria do Carmo!




"Os inúmeros mestrados e doutoramentos que se vão efectuando no campo da fotografia não chegam a ser fontes de conhecimento, porque se mantêm no grupo restrito da acção académica e raras vezes, muito raras vezes, as teses são publicadas. O que, no limitado panorama nacional da publicação fotográfica é mesmo um pecado.

Seja esta dissertação de mestrado de Catarina Miranda, defendida já em 2006 na Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto, A Retratística em Portugal e a Introdução da Daguerreotipia (1830 - 1845)

Trata-se de um período fundamental, génese de muitas simplificações e determinante para todas as reflexões sobre a modernidade e adequação portuguesa ao progresso da fotografia amadora e profissional. Depois de Gisele Freund habituámo-nos a pesquisar e encontrar o testemunho de um ou outro desenhador que teria passado a usar o daguerreótipo, tudo inserido na difícil e obscura luta de interesses de um grupo profissional que sempre se manifesta com a evolução das técnicas. Com esta investigação detalhada entramos deveras no universo dos pintores e desenhistas, que de uma forma significativamente "iluminista" iam ensaiando e por vezes produzindo a série de maquinismos que facilitam a visão e a reprodução da Natureza e da figuração. E então o daguerreótipo insere-se numa busca profiada de uma máquina de representar que demonstra essa atitude tão comum da modernidade: a criação de máquinas, dentro do paradigma moderno da Física Mecânica e do progresso do Homem. Procura-se, de facto, o caminho da cópia e da individualização, é todo um mundo que se modifica económica, social e culturalmente. 

O trabalho divide-se em três partes, I - Antes da chegada da fotografia; máquinas de desenhar, espectáculos ópticos; II - A introdução da Daguerreotipia; III - A Retratística: Retratos; Miniaturistas; Daguerreotipistas. Fica esclarecido o mundo das máquinas de ver e de mostrar, máquinas ópticas, que vão surgindo para resolver o problema fundamental do Iluminismo, o conhecimento para todos, que se irá reflectir no elitismo dos construtores de autómatos continentais e na Revolução Industrial inglesa e flamenga e, naturalmente, na Enciclopédia: câmara obscura, câmara lúcida, silhueta, fisionotraço ou fisionipo, pantógrafo...

Numa época de todas as revoluções a imprensa elitista ou a mais popular dos papéis volantes explode em explicítações e quantidade. E é precisamente através da imprensa que este trabalho se levanta; Catarina Miranda pesquisa nesta literatura o fluir das invenções, das comunicações e dos hábitos. E então a dissertação transforma-se numa História de Mentalidades que se alimenta de uma História do trabalho (dos desenhadores e pintores aos impressores e especificamente aos litógrafos e o público-alvo para quem estes trabalham), numa História de costumes e hábitos em ciclo de mudança, numa História da aparência que irá caracterizar os dois últimos séculos. Vemos a evolução dos grupos sociais da burguesia a marcarem a presença da sua virtude e notoriedade pessoal substituindo a linhagem que unifica, vemos ainda um público imenso a acorrer aos espectáculos ópticos (como a narrativa do espectáculo de fantasmagoria de lanterna mágica, em 1800, na Rua Augusta, em Lisboa, quando do nascimento da infanta Dª Maria Francisca), sem que não deixem de se manter mesmo quando a daguerreotipia domina. E ficamos a saber da produção nacional destes espectáculos, dos temas escolhidos, da irrupção do gosto pelo património, pelas campanhas de Napoleão, pelo exotismo oriental.

A introdução do daguerreótipo é detalhada, o espanto pela perfeição, a divulgação reiterada na imprensa comum ou científica e a crescente vulgarização do conceito como informação, antes da sua prática por estrangeiros e portugueses. De forma minuciosa fica esclarecida a transição dos desenhadores, pintores e miniaturistas para a daguerreotipia; a lenta inserção no Portugal Pitoresco, o papel da galvanoplastia que então dominava o "parecer ser" nacional no início de quarenta e que dá um novo fôlego às imagens dos gravadores e essa individualização crescente que se verifica na selecção dos retratados, agora utilizando os retratos como publicitação de ideias (cartismo, cabralismo) e instituições.

A investigação põe em causa muitos dos velhos chavões que a nossa História da Fotografia foi repetindo e não deixa nunca de levantar argumentos contra afirmações que a consulta dos jornais invalida. Aqui e ali dão-se conta dos sucessivos inventos e adaptações portuguesas a metodologias conhecidas. Aprendemos que o interesse pela representação é profundo, que há um público numeroso para as sucessivas produções de desenhos impressos (reis, princípes, políticos, acontecimentos, artistas, cantoras de ópera, temas religiosos). E, com isto, também se aprende que o daguerreótipo, apesar da perfeição da reprodução, não respondia, pela sua tradução na xilogravura e, crescentemente, da litografia, à necessidade de possessão do público da imagem, que já existia com a divulgação quase popular do desenho. O que explica a manutenção deste na impressão e a aceitação repentina da reprodução fotográfica em papel nos finais dos anos cinquenta. 

Uma História da Fotografia é necessariamente global, imbrica nos inúmeros domínios do social e só assim nos faz entender o que representa. E, ainda, como lápis da Natureza a fotografia passa a filosofia do tempo e da vida interior do sujeito.

Maria do Carmo Serén"

mocidade portuguesa feminina [24]




PT/TT/EPJS/SF/001-001/0056/1890M © Arquivo Nacional da Torre do Tombo | Fundo Empresa Pública Jornal O Século


As filiadas da Mocidade Portuguesa Feminina saúdam os seus camaradas que desfilam na Avenida da Liberdade. Lisboa, 1938.



PT/TT/EPJS/SF/001-001/0056/1943M © Arquivo Nacional da Torre do Tombo | Fundo Empresa Pública Jornal O Século


As filiadas da Mocidade Portuguesa Feminina assistindo à missa campal no acampamento, em Palhavã. Lisboa, 1938.



 

Correio do Minho, n.º 9523 (17 jan. 2015), p. 30.

sexta-feira, 16 de janeiro de 2015

The Photographer's Eye, 2



The Photographer's Eye, 2
the thing itself


The Photographer's Eye, 1 - introduction
The Photographer's Eye, 3 - the detail
The Photographer's Eye, 4 - the frame
The Photographer's Eye, 5 - time
The Photographer's Eye, 6 - vantage point
The Photographer's Eye, 7


The Thing Itself  [8]

The first thing that the photographer learned was that photography dealt with the actual; he had not only to accept this fact, but to treasure it; unless he did, photography would defeat him. He learned that the world itself is an artist of incomparable inventiveness, and that to recognize its best works and moments, to anticipate them, to clarify them and make them permanent, requires intelligence both acute and supple.

But he learned also that the factuality of his pictures, no matter how convincing and unarguable, was a different thing than the reality itself
Much of the reality was filtered out in the static little black and white image, and some of it was exhibited with an unnatural clarity, an exaggerated importance. 
The subject and the picture were not the same thing, although they would afterwards seem so. 
It was the photographer's problem to see not simply the reality before him but the still invisible picture, and to make his choices in terms of the latter.

This was an artistic problem, not a scientific one, but the public believed that the photograph could not lie, and it was easier for the photographer if he believed it too, or pretended to. 
Thus he was likely to claim that what our eyes saw was an illusion, and what the camera saw was the truth. Hawthorne's Holgrave, speaking of a difficult portrait subject said: 


"We give [heaven's broad and simple sunshine] credit only for depicting the merest surface, but it actually brings out the secret character with a truth that no painter would ever venture upon, even could he detect it… the remarkable point is that the original wears, to the world's eye… an exceedingly pleasant countenance, indicative of benevolence, openness of heart, sunny good humor, and other praiseworthy qualities of that cast. The sun, as you see, tells quite another story, and will not be coaxed out of it, after half a dozen patient attempts on my part. Here we have a man, sly, subtle, hard, imperious, and withal, cold as ice"5
In a sense Holgrave was right in giving more credence to the camera image than to his own eyes, for the image would survive the subject, and become the remembered reality
William M. Ivins, Jr. said 
"at any given moment the accepted report of an event is of greater importance than the event, for what we think about and act upon is the symbolic report and not the concrete event itself."6 
He also said:
"The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true and it would end up by believing that what it saw a photograph of was true."7


5. Hawthorne, op. cit., p. 85.
6. William M. Ivins, Jr., Prints end Visual Communication.Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1953, p. 180.
7. Ibid., p. 94.
*
Baseado numa exposição de 1964, o livro The Photographer's Eye foi publicado em gravura em 1966 e reimpresso em 1980 e 2007.
J. Nevins publicou o conteúdo textual do catálogo publicado pelo Museu de Arte Moderna de Nova Iorque, que transcrevemos aqui.

quarta-feira, 14 de janeiro de 2015

The Photographer's Eye, 1

capa do livro "The Photographer's Eye", de John Szarkowski. Moma, 1966, 1980, 2007.














Baseado numa exposição de 1964, The Photographer's Eye foi publicado em gravura em 1966 e reimpresso em 1980 e 2007.

J. Nevins publicou o conteúdo textual do catálogo publicado pelo Museu de Arte Moderna de Nova Iorque, que transcrevemos aqui.


[6] introduction
"This book is an investigation of what photographs look like, and of why they look that way. It is concerned with photographic style and with photographic tradition: with the sense of possibilities that a photographer today takes to his work.

The invention of photography provided a radically new picture-making process—a process based not on synthesis but on selection. The difference was a basic one. Paintings were made —constructed from a storehouse of traditional schemes and skills and attitudes—but photographs, as the man on the street put it, were taken.

The difference raised a creative issue of a new order: how could this mechanical and mindless process be made to produce pictures meaningful in human terms—pictures with clarity and coherence and a point of view? It was soon demonstrated that an answer would not be found by those who loved too much the old forms, for in large part the photographer was bereft of the old artistic traditions. Speaking of photography Baudelaire said: "This industry, by invading the territories of art, has become art's most mortal enemy."1 
And in his own terms of reference Baudelaire was half right; certainly the new medium could not satisfy old standards. The photographer must find new ways to make his meaning clear.

These new ways might be found by men who could abandon their allegiance to traditional pictorial standards—or by the artistically ignorant, who had no old allegiances to break. There have been many of the latter sort. Since its earliest days, photography has been practiced by thousands who shared no common tradition or training, who were disciplined and united by no academy or guild, who considered their medium variously as a science, an art, a trade, or an entertainment, and who were often unaware of each other's work. Those who invented photography were scientists and painters, but its professional practitioners were a very different lot. Hawthorne's daguerreotypist hero Holgrave in the house of the seven gables was perhaps not far from typical:

"Though now but twenty-two years old, he had already been a country schoolmaster; salesman in a country store; and the political editor of a country newspaper. He had subsequently travelled as a peddler of cologne water and other essences. He had studied and practiced dentistry. Still more recently he had been a public lecturer on mesmerism, for which science he had very remarkable endowments. His present phase as a daguerreotypist was of no more importance in his own view, nor likely to be more permanent, than any of the preceding ones."2

The enormous popularity of the new medium produced professionals by the thousands—converted silversmiths, tinkers, druggists, blacksmiths and printers. 
If photography was a new artistic problem, such men had the advantage of having nothing to unlearn. Among them they produced a flood of images. 
In 1853 the new york daily tribune estimated that three million daguerreotypes were being produced that year.3 
Some of these pictures were the product of knowledge and skill and sensibility and invention; many were the product of accident, improvisation, misunderstanding, and empirical experiment. But whether produced by art or by luck, each picture was part of a massive assault on our traditional habits of seeing.

By the latter decades of the nineteenth century the professionals and the serious amateurs were joined by an even larger host of casual snapshooters. 
By the early eighties the dry plate, which could be purchased ready-to-use, had replaced the refractory and messy wet plate process, which demanded that the plate be prepared just before exposure and processed before its emulsion had dried. 
The dry plate spawned the hand camera and the snapshot. 

[7] introduction
Photography had become easy. 
In 1893 an English writer complained that the new situation had "created an army of photographers who run rampant over the globe, photographing objects of all sorts, sizes and shapes, under almost every condition, without ever pausing to ask themselves, is this or that artistic? … They spy a view, it seems to please, the camera is focused, the shot taken! There is no pause, why should there be? For art may err but nature cannot miss, says the poet, and they listen to the dictum. To them, composition, light, shade, form and texture are so many catch phrases…"4

These pictures, taken by the thousands by journeyman worker and Sunday hobbyist, were unlike any pictures before them. The variety of their imagery was prodigious. Each subtle variation in viewpoint or light, each passing moment, each change in the tonality of the print, created a new picture. The trained artist could draw a head or a hand from a dozen perspectives. The photographer discovered that the gestures of a hand were infinitely various, and that the wall of a building in the sun was never twice the same.

Most of this deluge of pictures seemed formless and accidental, but some achieved coherence, even in their strangeness. Some of the new images were memorable, and seemed significant beyond their limited intention. These remembered pictures enlarged one's sense of possibilities as he looked again at the real world. While they were remembered they survived, like organisms, to reproduce and evolve.

But it was not only the way that photography described things that was new; it was also the things it chose to describe. 
Photographers shot "…objects of all sorts, sizes and shapes… without ever pausing to ask themselves, is this or that artistic?" 
Painting was difficult, expensive, and precious, and it recorded what was known to be important. 
Photography was easy, cheap and ubiquitous, and it recorded anything: shop windows and sod houses and family pets and steam engines and unimportant people. 

And once made objective and permanent, immortalized in a picture, these trivial things took on importance. By the end of the century, for the first time in history, even the poor man knew what his ancestors had looked like.

The photographer learned in two ways: 
first, from a worker's intimate understanding of his tools and materials (if his plate would not record the clouds, he could point his camera down and eliminate the sky); 
and second he learned from other photographs, which presented themselves in an unending stream. 
Whether his concern was commercial or artistic, his tradition was formed by all the photographs that had impressed themselves upon his consciousness.

The pictures reproduced in this book were made over almost a century and a quarter.
They were made for various reasons, by men of different concerns and varying talent. They have in fact little in common except their success, and a shared vocabulary: these pictures are unmistakably photographs. The vision they share belongs to no school or aesthetic theory, but to photography itself. The character of this vision was discovered by photographers at work, as their awareness of photography's potentials grew.

If this is true, it should be possible to consider the history of the medium in terms of photographers' progressive awareness of characteristics and problems that have seemed inherent in the medium. Five such issues are considered below.

These issues do not define discrete categories of work; on the contrary they should be regarded as interdependent aspects of a single problem— as section views through the body of photographic tradition. As such, it is hoped that they may contribute to the formulation of a vocabulary and a critical perspective more fully responsive to the unique phenomena of photography.

Footnotes
1 . Charles Baudelaire, "Salon de 1859," translated by Jonathan Mayne for The Mirror of Art, Critical Studies by Charles Beudeleire London: Phaidon Press, 1955. (Quoted from On Photography, A Source Book of Photo History in Fecsimile, edited by Beaumont Newhall. Watkins Glen, N. Y.: Century House, 1956, p. 106.)
2. Nathaniel Hawthorne, The [louse of the Seven Gables. New York: Signet Classics edition, 1961, pp. 156-7.
3. A. C. Willers, "Poet and Photography," in Picturescope, Vol. XI, No. 4. New York: Picture Division, Special Libraries Association, 1963, p. 46.
4. E. E. Cohen, "Bad Form in Photography," in The International Annual of Anthony's Photographic Bulletin. New York and London: E. and H. T. Anthony, 1893, p. 18.


The Photographer's Eye, 1 - introduction
The Photographer's Eye, 2 - the thing itself
The Photographer's Eye, 3 - the detail
The Photographer's Eye, 4 - the frame
The Photographer's Eye, 5 - time
The Photographer's Eye, 6 - vantage point
The Photographer's Eye, 7