leo photophile

Through a glass darkly

I talked of Josef

I talked of Jacob too – the patriarch.

But Josef first: French, b. (Czech) 1938 Born in a tiny village of Moravia, Koudelka began photographing his family and surroundings as a teenager with a 6 x 6 Bakelite camera. 

Chagrin that he would be younger than me but has achieved so much more.  

 Child  Child by Josef Koudelka  

But there’s another guy – Roy DeCarava

Stove Stove by Roy DeCarava

 And finally, a couple of mine  

 Lighting up Reading Room

(This shot is from the late 1960s. I saw this old chap lighting his pipe under the high windows in Clydebank public library. Catch him doing it these days!)

 Winter afternoon in Glasgow Winter afternoon in Glasgow

Now that I remember, there are two photographs by Izis (Israel Bidermanas) that I have not seen for years, but which “vibrate in the memory” and “live within the sense they quicken”. One is of a snow scene in Paris taken from above with criss-cross paths in the snow. The other is like a vision – of a French chateau. I have tried to find them, but never come across them again. 


August 7, 2006 Posted by | Bidermanas, black and white photography, Izis, Koudelka | 1 Comment


Lyones, according to Mallory’s Morte Darthur, is the sister of Lynet, and the woman who K loves. K, who has served his time in the court kitchen, is knighted by Lancelot and given the honourable name of Sir Gareth by virtue of his having proved himself “passing perilous” in jousting with his lord, who now reckons his liege a worthy warrior and well able to protect Lynet. The Lady Lynet, however, despises K, and persists in considering him to be a mere kitchen page. She is, thus, the damsel who cannot be pleased. When K (Gareth) by now in Lynet’s service, sets eyes on her sister Lyones, as she looks from her castle, he immediately falls in love with her. But, though he presses his suit, Lyones insists he wander for another year, desiring him not to be hasty, even though she loves him and promises never to betray him. Mallory suggests there are connections between Lyones and the sorceress Morgaine le Fay, and indeed her magic powers protect Gareth from a series of nocturnal attacks by a perfidious stranger bearing a battle axe. In the account of these woundings there are parallels with the story of Jacob at the ford of Jabbok in the book of Genesis, a passage I want to talk about sometime here.

Homage to GinaHomage to Gina

August 7, 2006 Posted by | black and white photography, Jabbok | Leave a comment