Does anyone remember Marcel Duchamp’s found art? The urinal he simply signed “R. Mutt 1917″ was discussed it my art, art history, photo and photo history classes when I was a geography/photography student some 30 years ago. We finally got to see it in person at the Pompidou Center in Paris in June. Even though this piece was quite popular among the art professors and art students at the university, I didn’t have to hold my camera above crowds of admiring people to get a photo of Duchamp’s porcelain masterpiece, as Laurie pointed out. I could actually touch it as there were no barriers around it, alarms to set off or even a guard in the room.
I had to do major sneaking to get this photograph of the cutaway model of the opera in Paris. It was in a museum that strictly forbid photos, and there were guards everywhere to remind people not to take photos. First I had to wait for a break in the hordes of tourists marveling at the model, then I had to wait for the guard to get up and walk out of earshot of my shutter before I could sneak a pic. It took several tries over three different visits to the museum before I got a successful stealth photo of the model. One reason I wanted a photo of this model is because the box seats on the end of the first row of box seats was the box we sat in when we went to an opera at the end of May. The apartment we rented in Paris was a block from the Opera. The second photo was taken from the middle of the street by the apartment and the third photo is looking the other way toward the Louvre at the bottom of the street.
I’ve been searching for a reasonably priced case for my 4X5 view camera. Most of the cases made for 4X5 view cameras that would fit this model were more than double what I paid for the camera and lens for cases in good condition, and $100 or more for cases that were pretty old and beat up. After lots of searching I found the above instrument case that had the right dimensions for $25 with free shipping. I got a call from the reception desk that I had a package that is really heavy up front. I was wondering what came in that would be heavy. I walked up front to find the case, and when I picked it up it is was very light. I asked Beth about it and she said that the delivery guy wrestled it in through the front door on a dolly, and then used both hands and his legs to slide it off the dolly like it weighed a ton. Either he was paying attention to the “Delicate Unit Handle with Care” sign by the handle on the lid, or he was a drama queen. Besides being a great price, very sturdy and light weight, this case has been all over the world with stickers from airports in China, Columbia, Chile, and the Dominican Republic that we were able to easily identify. With a little cutting on the foam, it’s a perfect fit for the camera with room to add compartments for film holders, dark cloth and other accessories.
The photo below is a 4X5 view camera selfie of sorts.
Every time Laurie gets up from of her chair at the end of the table, Guildenstern gets in it. Once she moves Guildenstern off her chair and sits back down, René bombs his way over to her, flying from chair to chair (three chairs in all) to get across the counter and finally onto the table and over to Laurie. I didn’t have the best lighting for capturing René in flight in these shots, so I set up a flash and tried to get him to do is chair to chair flight again, but he would have nothing to do with flying to the chair with that new fangled light source off to the side of it.
I adapted today’s title from the video “All Your Base Are Belong To Us”, a video that goes back to 2001. The title of the video was taken from a line in the 1991 introduction to an adaption of the arcade game “Zero Wing” that had really bad Japanese-to-English translation. Around our house, whenever you get up from a chair, a cat or a bird is likely to occupy it because to them “all your chair are belong to us!”