“Something Else,” 10/15/80

These are my notes from Ray K. Metzker’s lecture at Columbia College:

“10/15/80-Ray’s Lecture, ‘Something Else,’ in the horrible new auditorium: Some current perceivable trends are characterized by the electronic media making older, slower processes look outmoded and unwieldy; a constant flow of information turning folks into junkies; need for instant gratification and shortening of attention spans caused by the above. There is a predominance of shallow formalism and nihilistic modernism. One can choose, or not (Ray does) to believe in more – humanism, a spiritual life, whatever –  which informs good work. Talk like this can sound awfully pretentious before showing one’s work, but it’s important to put everything on the line, to test the work and the artist. Ray admits to influences by, or at least a great interest in, Matisse, and sculptor Robert Hudson.”

aNOTHer Transmission from 1988

“Dr. D- As I sit here rereading/relooking at Beaumont Newhall’s History of Photography I am pleasantly reminded that I know how to see. This is a deeply visceral knowledge that can’t be entirely taught and can never be taken away. It is a thing that opens worlds to me that are closed to most. It is a complex skill that came about under your …  Read Moretutelage at the age when I was ready for it/ could learn it/ was bright enough to battle against it. You took intuition and ground it into a way to perceive the world. Twenty years on, after many attempts to bury it alive… it breathes life into my being. Unkillable.

So now, after many years and thousands of photographs, I thank you.

And a word to the cherubs in D’s present care… be steadfast, rebellious and mindful of the Old Man’s words and wisdom… it will serve you well in more ways than you presently know.”