The Practice of Everyday Life
February 20th, 2013 • Culture Briefings
I found inspiration in the unlikeliest of places and it reminded me that we are surrounded by beauty all around us. “Intimacy Under the Wires”, a project by New York based freelance travel photographer called Sivan Askayo depicts a series of homes with their laundry dripping dry on their windows or makeshift wires. Shot across Tel Aviv, Madrid, Barcelona, Florence, Venice – this mundane act of drying clothes took me back to my childhood. In my travels around the world, I’ve come to appreciate behaviors that are similar to those that I grew up with and on some level, I’m still astounded (and feel slightly not entirely at home here) that this practice doesn’t exist in USA. Probably the weather. And our access to technology. Anyways, Askayo’s series of photographs touched a chord. And taught me something about myself. That I’m drawn to observations and art that tells stories around everyday life.
Artist Brenden O’Connell’s Wal-mart series was another project that inspired me. I recently read a profile on him in the New Yorker. The interview traces his journey as the artist who came to find his muse in America’s consumerism. His most popular series of work shows people shopping at Wal-marts. Or rows upon rows of Cheetos or Utz or other Wonderbread in its colorful glory. In the article, he says, “Trying to find beauty in the least-likely environment is kind of a spiritual practice.” I loved this description because I share a kindred love and curiosity of the great supermarkets of our time. The supermarket, the least sexiest place in all of America, but probably the most visited. That speaks volumes to me.
Enjoy some snippets of his work below. Also pay homage to French author Michel De Certeau, whose book title I borrowed to title this post.