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Added: Quintana Bloodworth - Date: 19.09.2021 16:51 - Views: 15217 - Clicks: 6745

Aperture magazine, which just celebrated its sixtieth anniversary, has published Aperture Magazine Anthology: The Minor White Years,a marvelous anthology devoted to Minor White, its founder and long-time editor, that collects the best of the critical writings on photography that appeared in the magazine in those years.

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Leafing through its s and seeing the familiar cover photographs brought back many memories, since I worked for Aperture between and and played a small part in the production of eleven issues of the magazine and a few books. I remember arriving at the address I had been given, East 91st Street and Lexington, wearing a dark blue suit, a white shirt, and a red tie and expecting a slick modern office.

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The kitchen in the back had been converted into a mailing room and storage space whose shelves were lined with past issues of the magazine and the couple of books we published. I had just published a book of poems, so that may have come up too. I took the job, even though the pay was miserable. What I remember vividly about that first day was the shocking untidiness of the office.

It was not easy to find a place to stand or sit, since books and photographs covered every chair and most of the available floor space. Inevitably, given the total mess, we spent a lot of our time looking for a letter or a photograph. Minor White would be on the phone or a famous photographer would come in unannounced and panic would ensue. I once found some photographs by W.

Eugene Smith that had slid behind a radiator, while he stood chatting amiably with Hoffman, oblivious to my desperate search behind his back. Maquette of the first issue cover of Aperture, with an untitled photograph by Dorothea Lange. I answered the rare phone calls, opened and answered mail from subscribers, swept the floor, paid the bills, delivered proofs to the printers, and was on call for various emergencies when an issue was in production, since there were no other full-time employees.

These visits to the printers, engravers, and compositors—who in dimly-lit lofts with grimy skylights and windows in lower Manhattan and Brooklyn plied their trade using old-fashioned letterpresses with the skill to achieve the range and depth of tone in the black-and-white photographs we published—were especially memorable. One entered a world that had hardly changed in a century to be met by some gaunt, ghostly-pale old man who looked like a character out of Dickens, who would then be ed, as he squinted over the image I had brought, by two equally venerable fellow workers. They would study it a long time, hardly exchanging a word, until one of them would indicate an area of the photograph with his finger and another one of them would either shake his head or nod in agreement.

In addition to the back issues and books we published, there were at any given time dozens of portfolios around the office that had been submitted to the magazine by both unknown and well-known photographers. Once in a long while one of them would actually turn up in person to make inquiries about a submission, only to be told by me that neither our publisher nor our editor were available and were not likely to be in the office in the near future.

Ruth Bernhard, spread from Aperture magazine, Vol. I recall an elderly man in a brown double-breasted suit who claimed to have traveled by bus with his portfolio of photographs all the way from North Dakota. Another time, two blond, angelic young men, who appeared to be identical twins, came through the door.

They showed me a series of nude color photographs of themselves and a couple of young girls who also appeared to be twins. While one of the boys took the pictures, the other three would laze completely uninhibited on some gorgeous summer meadow, or they would be seen bathing in a mountain stream, smooching and making love.

My instructions were to have photographers leave the work they brought along if it looked promising, and this illustrated teenage Kama Sutra certainly did, since these boys were obviously familiar with the nudes of Edward Weston and knew how to take a photograph. As far as I remember, none of these or other unsolicited photographs was ever published in the magazine. He writes in it about hearing photographers often say that if they could write they would not take pictures. With me, I realized, it was the other way around.

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If I could take pictures, I would not write poems—or at least, this is what I thought every time I fell in love with some photograph in the office, in many cases with one that I had already seen, but somehow, to my surprise, failed to properly notice before. The attentive eye makes the world interesting.

A good photograph, like a good poem, is a self-contained little universe inexhaustible to scrutiny. Then, abruptly, a phone would ring with some irate subscriber shouting that his issue arrived damaged in the mail, and the spell would be broken.

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Bunnell, is published by Aperture. A rede of Aperture magazine is launching this month. Best of The New York Review, plus books, events, and other items of interest. Come Closer and Listen, his latest book of poems, will be out next year. August Read Next. Everyone who walks the busy streets of a city takes imaginary snapshots.

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Of course, out of the hundreds of…. Everything in the world exists to end. Aperture Ruth Bernhard, spread from Aperture magazine, Vol. News about upcoming issues, contributors, special events, online features, and more. The New York Review of Books: recent articles and content from nybooks.

I consent to having NYR add my to their mailing list. Submit a letter: us letters nybooks. More by Charles Simic Ghost Ship. Poems from the Abyss. Howard Moss. Charles Simic. Mary McCarthy. Christopher Benfey. Jason Epstein. George Orwell. Give a gift.

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