Friday, October 7, 2011

Watch This: Bill Cunningham New York

If you're not one of the million or so Netflix users that got so angry with their recent price hikes and other stupid business moves that you cancelled, then you can stream the wonderful documentary "Bill Cunningham, New York" by Richard Press. I'm watching it right now and loving it so much that I couldn't wait to post. It's so nice to be reminded that the best photographers usually aren't full of the vain artistic pretense that plagues so much of the art world. What an amazing character! His commitment to his work, his courage, his sense of humanity is exemplary. I don't tend to pay attention to fashion photography, but street photography is my favorite genre. Cunningham represents a hybrid of the two, and in the best possible way. He has the sense of humor and the kindness of the French humanist photographers and a democratic sort of fashion sense that comes from careful observation of the street. I love that he hates "in/out" lists because he finds all self expression valid. A quote by Bill:
"It's not photography. I mean, any real photographer would say 'He's a fraud!' Well, they're right. I'm just about capturing what I see, and documenting what I see."
Sounds like something Eugene Atget might have said. His quirkiness also reminds me of and William Eggleston. I could go on, but it's distracting me from the movie.

Trust me, if you like fashion and/or street photography, you'll love this movie.