Friday, June 4, 2010

SF, Then

SF, Then

I had the day off work today, and decided to go to a photo exhibition up in the city. Last week, it seemed like everyone and their uncle were blogging/buzzing/twittering about Fred Lyon, along with his exhibition at the recently moved Modernbook gallery. I'd unfortunately never heard of him, but I spent a few days correcting this deficit, and as it turns out, he's awesome.

He did a lot of shooting at a unique time in SF's history -- in the 40s and the 50s, when the city was really on the rise after WWII. He has a great eye for composition and "moment" (kind of putting him in that Cartier-Bresson frame of reference, I guess), and uses all the pieces of the SF landscape as the setting for his shots. That includes the cable cars, the BridgeCoit Tower, the hills, and (of course) the fog. I had a chance to meet him tonight and get him to autograph my favorite photo from his book. Very nice guy, and he was kind enough to tell me that he felt like that there was a bond between everyone who was a street photographer. Also, that he couldn't wait to get done selling these books, so he could get out on the street and take some more pictures.

Exciting to hear, but discouraging to learn the photo disease may actually be incurable.

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