Log in

No account? Create an account

John Palcewski's Journal

Works In Progress

Previous Entry Share Next Entry
Rome and the Ineffable

In Rome not too long ago I made an image of this woman, who was sitting at the edge of the Trevi Fountain. Maybe she was thinking of Fellini directing Anita Ekberg and Marcello Mastroianni, as if they actually needed direction. Later on my way to the Vatican I saw a crowd, and a woman arguing with a Carabinieri, a most futile exercise. Then two surprisingly angry nuns.

I remember suddenly thinking that beneath the surface of scenes I capture with my camera there's something cold, alien, ineffable, way beyond my perception or understanding.

Alberto Moravia touches on it in his novel, The Voyeur:

"This world, which in its most poetic and peaceful moments--a fine spring morning, for example, in the country or by the sea--seems so serene, so gentle, so calm, is in fact composed of a demonic destructive fury, even though that fury is completely hidden and absolutely invisible...a harmless, lovable reality that can transform itself in an instant into an inferno. Or more exactly still, what amazes me is a sort of falseness and hypocrisy about nature, which having apparently been conquered a thousand times, now rediscovers in an even more terrible fashion its ancient role as man's merciless enemy."

Site Meter

  • 1
You are an amazing photographer. That Trevi photo -- it takes my breath away: Portrait of a Woman Who Lines Her Pillow With Regret...

Only Moravia novel I've ever read is The Conformist because the Bertolucci film moved me so completely -- Dominique Sanda slaughtered in the snow like a deer --wow!

Thanks! Moravia's stories of Rome are suffused with golden late-afternoon light, very haunting and melancholy. As for film, he was once quoted as saying it was a corrupt art because it's driven by a welter of mechanisms. There's virtually no spontaneity, largely due to the machines that are used in creating a movie, and what’s more it’s done not by an individual artist, but a herd. There’s an endless parade of technicians, who are obliged keep all the machines running, and so on.

But then if you check out imdb you'll see multiple entries for his being the writer or screenplay writer of some 59 films.

  • 1