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Author Topic: Vivian Maier revisited  (Read 648 times)

Rob C

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Vivian Maier revisited
« on: September 26, 2018, 08:57:51 am »

Just when I thought I knew quite a lot about the story, having watched the Beeb's version of it quite some time ago, I spent lunchtime today forgetting what was entering my digestive system absorbing, instead, what was going into my head courtesy that lovely little device, the iPad:

 https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&channel=ipad_bm&source=hp&ei=SWmrW8fMO-KprgTs376gDg&ins=false&q=vivian+maier+i+ages&oq=vivian+maier+i+ages&gs_l=mobile-gws-wiz-hp.3..46i13.37836.46185..46998...0.0..0.129.2093.1j18......0....1.......3..0j41j46j0i22i30j33i160.CgE1I-4a-zw#imgrc=IXEFAeMV34cZ4M:

The pictures had mostly been seen before, but that's not my point in posting: the point is that looking at some of the links to the shots reveals all sorts of interviews with the guys who found the work, as well as information about heirs once unknown, galleries, and the legal confusion that has come to surround what can and cannot be done with her work today, as well as legal definitions of the differences between owning a print and copyright to reproduce said print and market such reproductions yourself.

Rob

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2018, 04:18:58 pm »

All the stuff about Maier's estate amounts to a big ball o' mess IMO. Her photos, OTOH, remain hallmarks of visual clarity and astute judgment. I keep my books of her work on the table next to my favorite chair.  :)

-Dave-
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Rob C

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2018, 05:47:24 pm »

All the stuff about Maier's estate amounts to a big ball o' mess IMO. Her photos, OTOH, remain hallmarks of visual clarity and astute judgment. I keep my books of her work on the table next to my favorite chair.  :)

-Dave-

I'm cheap: I settle, in many cases, for the iPad.

I have no favourite chair, though, as I hate my swivel typist one and the couch mocks me every time that I realise I have been draped along it. Exercise, walk more it smirks at me as I dust off the crumbs from whatever has filled the moment.

But returning to yourself, I'd have expected that station reserved for Sally M.

Unfaithful you!

:-)

Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2018, 05:55:10 pm »

All the stuff about Maier's estate amounts to a big ball o' mess IMO. Her photos, OTOH, remain hallmarks of visual clarity and astute judgment.
Agreed!
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-Eric Myrvaagnes (visit my website: http://myrvaagnes.com)

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2018, 01:14:22 pm »

It is possible that some of you might find my extended notes from 2017 of some interest one way or the other:

https://photothunk.blogspot.com/2017/04/vivian-maier.html

tl;dr is that I believe that Vivian Maier is largely a construction of John Maloof.
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Rob C

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2018, 03:19:47 pm »

Well, I read your piece; I have not seen any of the books and wouldn't buy them anyway, despite thinking her work very good, judging from what I have dredged from the depths of the Internet and the BBC documentary.

The funny thing is, where you tend to be somewhat negative about Ms Maier I see Arbus instead. Did Arbus have style? To me, from what I see on the 'net, she was a fairly lousy technician and her identity was pretty much wrapped up in the freak show she so enjoyed until she took herself out. Which probably explains more about her photography and motivation than is kind. If concentrating on one topic is acceptably a definition of style, then okay, she was a stylist. Hardly convinces me, though. Style demands a bit beyond subject. Style is a fairly unmistakable handwriting whatever the author writes.

If you want to be able to take a photographer, any photographer, and condemn him or her for similarity in their work to the work of others, expecting some virginal version, then I guess its possibly you has the problem, which is that you start off on the wrong foot: no photographer has ever been unique to the extent that none of his work reflects, somewhere, that of others. Similarity within the same genre is unavoidably a direct product of the genre, and impossible to escape. Are you suggesting, perchance, that there are no echoes between Leiter, Faurer, Levitt, Levinstein, Frank, Model, Davidson and Grossman at one end of the time capsule and Winogrand and Meyerowitz at the other?

Of course, you may or may not be right to pour a little petrol over the people who are attempting to monetize Maier, but in the end, why not? How much money gets made every day by selling cheap Stars and Stripes flags probably not even made in the USA? It's a fact of life, and in this case, at least we owe them the credit for the introduction (to Maier, not the flags).

On the whole, I'm happier to have seen her work than not.

Rob

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2018, 03:27:47 pm »

I could make neither head nor tales of Arbus until I saw a pretty thorough retrospective in San Francisco, and then I think I got it. She was on about something, but I'm not sure it was a particularly healthy something.

My point is roughly that Maier is being pitched as "on about something" when she manifestly was not.
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Telecaster

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2018, 04:18:04 pm »

Every *photographer is a construction of an editing process, whether their own or someone else's.

-Dave-

*Every creator in fact.
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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2018, 04:21:21 pm »

I'd have expected that station reserved for Sally M.

No. I like but don't love her work. I do love her autobio, though. :)

-Dave-
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RSL

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Re: Vivian Maier revisited
« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2018, 04:26:48 pm »

+1. I have her books. I like 'em. I don't see her as another Helen Levitt, though.
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