Margaret Brassler Kane’s Harlem Dancers — Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: 2 items or the number two

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: 2 items or the number two.

We recently visited the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D. C. One piece of art that we particularly liked was Harlem Dancers, a sculpture in Tennessee marble created by Margaret Brassler Kane.

This website is a good source of information about Margaret Brassler Kane.  Born into a wealthy family in 1909, she married in 1930 and began sculpting human busts and animal figures, creating models in clay and having them cast in bronze.  After the stock market crash of 1929 and subsequent reduction in income, as well as the birth of her first child, she switched materials from the more expensive bronze casting to marble, which she could process closer home with the full support of her extended family. Her first marble piece, completed in 1937, was Harlem Dancers.  Later in life, this sculpture was duplicated in bronze and she donated the original marble statue to the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 1993.

The figure is generously sized at 29 7/8” x 14 ½” x 14”, although the table on which it stands is tall enough that viewing the individual heads is a bit difficult.  What we particularly appreciate about this piece is how its simple curves are able to suggest more complex shapes and emotions.  The dress of the female dancer is form-fitting yet elegant; the pattern of the skirt was, in fact, based on the design of peanut shells and suggests movement. Using only a few simple lines, the man’s suit is classically formal.  The two forms, man and woman, fit together well.  Our favorite part of the piece is the quiet serenity of the woman’s face.

 

Platform No. 1

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: 1 Item or the Number One.

In February of this year we rode the Nilgiri Mountain Railway (NMR) toy train from Coonoor to Ooty in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. We boarded the train at the Coonoor Railway Station (ONR), which has two platforms where travelers queue to wait for their train.  Platforms are indicated by signs in two languages, one of which is English.  Our best guess for the second language is Sanskrit.

This photo was taken on February 5, 2019. Specs are:

Canon 100D, ISO 6400, f/9, 1/500 sec, 61 mm.

Buddha’s Thumbnail

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Hands.

North of New Bagan, Myanmar, just off the Bagan-Chauk Road in Myin Ka Bar, are some of the largest Buddha figures we have ever seen.  One of these was a bhumisparsha Buddha, seated with his left hand palm upward on his lap and the fingers of the right hand pointing to the earth beside his right knee.  For a sense of the size of this Buddha, consider that the human hand in the photo is covering less than half of the right thumbnail of the Buddha.

This photo was taken on February 11, 2017. Specs are:

Olympus TG-4, ISO 2000, f/2.0, 1/30 sec, 4.5 mm.

Even Graffiti Eyes Can Cry — Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Eyes

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Eyes.

Graffiti is everywhere in Paris, France. What drew me to this street art, sprayed under the shelter of an arch near Place des Vosges, were the eyes.  If I had seen these crying eyes for the first time just eight days later, I would have said even graffiti eyes cried for the burning Notre Dame Cathedral.

This photo was taken on April 7, 2019. Specs are:

Canon 200D, ISO 800, f/3.5, 1/500 sec, 18 mm.

Lisbon Shadows — Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Shadows

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Shadows.

Walking through the Alfama in Lisbon, Portugal, we came across this double-shadowed building. In an area famous for its street art, the wall featured a simple shadow of a girl surrounded by flying birds. We were struck by the juxtaposition of the faux shadows  with the real shadows thrown by the bush and window shutters.

This photo was taken on September 8, 2017. Specs are:

Canon 100D, ISO 100, f/16, 1/50 sec, 18 mm.

Camel Carts at Pushkar — Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Things People Drive

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Things People Drive (ride, pilot or captain).

Camel carts are a popular ride at the Pushkar Camel Fair in Pushkar, Rajasthan, India. Here is a lineup of carts waiting for tourists who want to experience the stalls and other amusements at the fair from the relative safety of a jostling, tilting, thinly-padded dusty seat behind a surprisingly-docile steed.  The camel pulling our cart has posed for us, showing his best side.

This photo was taken on October 31, 2014. Specs are:

Olympus TG-3, ISO 100, f/5.0, 1/125 sec, 10.29 mm.

Glass Harp — Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Week 5 Photo – Music, guitar, instrument, men, coffee, etc.

This is our entry in Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Week 5 Photo – Music, guitar, instrument, men, coffee, etc..

During a street photography field trip to Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, we came across Jamey Turner playing his glass harp. From these stemmed glasses filled with water to various precise levels and strapped firmly to a simple table, he extracted beautiful classic and popular music with deft strokes of his fingers.

This photo was taken on July 12, 2016.  Specs are:

Canon SL1, ISO 100, f/3.2, 1/250 sec, 50 mm.