Friday, April 13, 2012

Met Museum and a Photo Walk Down Broadway

One of the great joys of retirement is having the time to do anything I want on a whim. On Wednesday morning I decided the last minute to head into New York to see the Gertrude and Leo Stein collection of artwork on exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I also had intended to spend some time in the new arabic wing, but the Stein exhibit was so large and when I finished with it I was so overwhelmed with all the masterpieces that I was already on overload. So many of the pieces they collected turned out to be iconic early works of the great masters like Picasso and Matisse - before they were recognized for being the great masters they were to become. 

As a photographer there is so much to learn by looking at artwork other than photographs - how these geniuses created their compositions, light, and colors (or lack thereof). I was very buzzed by the time I left the museum and started my walk downtown. Sometimes I find that after I see an exhibit, I am so totally absorbed in the work that I don't look around me as I walk, and I don't take many shots. Those that I take are not satisfying. But seeing so many wonderful Picassos and Matisses left me feeling like I wanted to get out and play with the light.

I'm working to overcome the autofocus difficulties I've been having. I was given two great tips today by someone who has had the same issues, so I'll get out tomorrow to try them. For now here's a few shots from the walk down Broadway.

On the subway going uptown to the museum I sat down in front of these people, and the boy in the center just about posed for me. The detail this camera grabs is comparable to my best shots with the D700, and the tonal range is all there.

This was a quick grab shot walking out of the museum. Very typical street situation where the moment happens suddenly right in front of me and there's no time to think. Just press the shutter and pray (of course it also helps to have a few years experience).

I'm always looking in restaurant windows. This is the first time I tried a 'through the glass with reflections' shot with the X-Pro1.

I was a block from Carnegie Hall when I saw three kids with violins strapped to their backs. I'd bet they know how to get there.


  1. Now those looks like Gene Pictures, you getting a hang of the new toy :)

    1. Indeed I am, Roman. Each time I go out to shoot I get a little more confident at handling the autofocus.

  2. Dear ,

    It is a wonderfull exhibition .

    And what a pleasure to see the portrait of Gertrude Stein by Riba-Rovira .Beside Tchelitchew and Balthus .

    And also the Preface Gertrude Stein wrote for his first exhibition in the Galerie Roquepine in Paris on 1945 .
    Where we can read Gertrude Stein writing Riba-Rovira "will go farther than Cezanne...will succeed in where Picasso failed...I am fascinated " by Riba-Rovira Gertrude Stein tells us .

    And you are you also fascinated indeed as Gertrude Stein ?

    But Gertrude Stein spoke also in this same document about Matisse and Juan Gris .And we learn Riba-Rovira went each week in Gertrude Stein's saloon rue Christine .
    With Edward Burns and Carl Van Vechten we can know Riba-Rovira did others portraits of Gertrude Stein .

    But we do not know where they are ;and you do you know perhaps ?

    With this wonderful portrait we do not forget it is the last time Gertrude Stein sat for an artist who is Riba-Rovira .

    This exhibition presents us a world success with this last painting portrait before she died .

    Both ,it is one of the last text where she gives her last art vision .As a light over that exhibition now at the Metropolitan Museum of Art of New York .

    Coming from San Francisco "Seeing five stories" to Washington and now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art of New York for our pleasure .

    And the must is to see for the first time in the same place portraits by Picasso, Picabia, Riba-Rovira, Tall-Coat, Valloton .

    You have the translate of Gertrude Stein's Riba-Rovira Preface on english Gertrude Stein's page on Wikipedia and in the catalog of this exhibition you can see in first place the mention of this portrait .And also other pictures Gertrude Stein bought him .

    And you have another place where you can see now Riba-Rovira's works it is an exhibition in Valencia in Spain "Homenage a Gertrude Stein" by Riba-Rovira in Galleria Muro ,if you like art ...


  3. I see in your photos are steadily mastering the new camera, these works are of top quality, I encourage you to fatten your collection, congratulations !!!

    a hug for our friend Gene
    Manuel Tello

  4. I agree with Roman.I even thought that you shot with D700 ;-).Very,very good Gene,love this.Have a nice day my friend!

    1. Darko, no D700 on this, It was all Fuji X-Pro1

  5. Great characters, gestures and expressions as usual, Gene! You know, you are the one I learn from!

  6. Agree with some of the comments: Now you really got used to your new camera. Great photos in the "Gene" style as we know it.

  7. A very elegant and beautiful work, Gene. I have really appreciated these shots and the story:
    A presto,