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Last Friday, February 24th, I stopped into fellow LCC instructor Jon Meyer’s studio to see the documentary Through a Lens Darkly presented by Photography at Oregon, a non profit organization in Lane County that puts on exhibits and other events like the showing of this film particularly in the field of photography. Though a Lens Darkly showcases the history of African American Photography in America from Fredrick Douglas, who’s self portraits were some of the first published and well known African-American photographs that showed blacks in a positive to the contemporaries  of the late 20th century. Filmaker Thomas Allen Harris intermingles history with his own childhood memories and his introduction to photo taking. The harsh images of lynching and mystral shows are mixed with happy families enjoying a normal life. References and interviews with Anthony Garboza and Renee Cox enhances the story about the “National Family Album”.

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The people of Photography at Oregon were very friendly and welcomed all who walked in with free popcorn(which was delicious) and free coffee(which was instant. The man I was sitting next to seemed like he was thrilled that there was free stuff and signed up for the mailing list just on that alone. I attract the coolest people to talk to. At the end of the movie it was mentioned there was going to be a discussion amongst ourselves the viewers which seemed awkward in a way to me, it being one of the first times I have been to one of their events. I didn’t stay for anxiety sake. At one point of the screening I went to the bathroom and heard a noise that sounded like I got locked out of the screening. Hopefully the more I go to things like this, the less I will overthink what people think.

I guess also this was something of a cop out for this project. I mean it was a movie, that was originally shown on PBS. I could be full of BS and just watched the movie on tv, which I didn’t I swear. I should of at least gone to an event where the artist or even filmmaker was in attendance. I have done that before. This one time Crispin Glover was in town at the bijou and he was in the lobby during the movie. I had to pee in the middle of the movie so when I went to the lobby and Glover tried to avoid interaction with me by going to the courtyard but he didn’t that theres no exit in the courtyard and that is where the bathrooms are, which is where I was going. so he had to turn around and we had an awkward head nod moment. I used to hang out with a gal who worked at Vistra frame shop and they are a part of the first Friday art walk. I would go and visit when she had to hang at those things. I used to mind my P’s and Q’s and try and manage my vino and cheese intake. BOY OH BOY OH BOY! I DOOOOOO LOVE ME SOME FREE CHEESE!!!

LINKS….

https://photographyatoregon.org

 


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