someone said that these pictures taken on "my" palm treo look like ultrasounds, but i think they have an uncanny resemblance to the daguerreotypes i saw recently in a darkened corner of the Met. i had just left the el greco exhibit with it's crowd and audio headsets and its huge canvases upon which slightly elongated, surrealistic figures stared up to heaven, looking for a god who remained invisible. entering the empty, narrow passageways of The Dawn of Photography: French Daguerreotypes, 1839–1855 was quite a change--i felt like i was decompressing into the stillness as i stared into TV-sized squares of light within which a single daguerreotype was mounted upon a page of black paper. i peered, impassively across the centuries into another world--another time, before there were photographs and movies to tell us what we looked like. everything was different, but whereas i'd expected things to perhaps look younger, buildings and faces alike appeared beaten and sunken, like a malnourished, canterkerous old man, to whom everyone has learned not to pay much attention.
it was a mirrorworld, dipped in formaldahyde...just when i thought it had nothing more to teach me, there was the shock of an overexposed blue sky...ebulient and detailed, like stained glass.
i saw a man revealing the untouched white of his forehead in a gesture of intimacy and trust...he had no reason to fear photography...to him, it was merely a matter of curiousity, he thought it an interesting invention.
(there was shyness in his eyes, but they weren't guarded; his hat was folded loosely in his lap)
no one knew what awesome power it was to have over the world.
this here, preserved in glass and in shadow, was the birth of the image as reproduction. the subject matter itself eluded to the moment of change that was upon us: there were daguerreotypes of dirty bedrooms and bison, dead children and naked twins...
a grecian landscape...a lonely booth lit by a flash...
and now, one hundred and sixty-five years later we're trying to figure out how much longer to go until we can digitize objects down to the core of their particles and get all possible informationon all conceivable sides at once?
reproduction=the means to do so
(as well as the scale of those means)
i want a special new recording device
the size of a credit card
that works exactly like a video camera except it captures things in their essence.
for instance i'd be able to get you an accurate copy of the way my muscles feel inside.
right this very instant.
the exhaustion at the center of them
the ache all around
the perfect recording device
would allow me to carry the smell of your skin with me, always