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Posted inArt

USA and the Other

“Wow your accent sounds so amazing,” is a phrase I often hear when people detect my South African accent. Whereas this is usually a compliment — and I accept it graciously — it can also have the effect of creating a distance between me and the other person if they aren’t South African. In short, it can often clarify that they belong to this place and I am an alien in their territory. But as pop star Sting’s pithy “legal alien” phrase comes to mind I quickly snap out of my self-imposed victimization. Of late, however, it has been quite obvious that the art world still propagates a fascination with the “other.”

Posted inArt

Murder Is Weegee’s Business

“Everybody ought to go careful in a city like this,” Joseph Cotten’s character Holly Martins is warned in The Third Man, the classic 1949 film noir that takes place in a war fractured Vienna. The line came into my head while viewing the photographs in Weegee: Murder is My Business at the International Center of Photography (ICP), where corpse after splayed corpse was flashbulb lit on the New York streets, crowds watching in curiousity or strange amusement while lantern-jawed police officers and a fedora-wearing photographer analyzed the scene.