Gertrude Käsbeir and Rinko Kawauchi have two things in common: they’re women and they’re photographers.
Walking into my local branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, it looks more or less like any other: computers to the left, children’s section to the right, non-fiction dead ahead. It’s only when I go upstairs to the already small fiction section that I see something abnormal: more shelves are empty than full.
Stepping off the L at the Morgan stop on Friday afternoon, the first thing I saw was two girls lugging giant canvases across the platform; just outside, there’s a pair of white humanoid busts surrounded by cans of spray paint, seemingly inviting passerby to contribute. The main event may be over the weekend, but Bushwick was clearly ready for the beginning of this year’s Open Studios.
My family took a lot of trips when I was young, and often we didn’t arrive at our destination until long into the evening. I still recall the disorientation of awaking somewhere with no idea how we’d gotten there — the hotel felt unmoored from reality, as though we’d travelled to an entirely different world rather than merely another state. Edward Hopper’s “Rooms for Tourists” (1945) evokes much the same feeling.
If you can imagine a lovechild of Walker Evans and Larry Clark, that’s Mike Brodie. Leaving home in 2002, at 17, Brodie became infatuated with train hopping and rode freight trains on and off for seven years. Along the way, he picked up his first camera, a Polaroid, in 2004 and began photographing his travels and his friends, switching to 35mm in 2006.