Monday, December 5, 2016

"Notes on Glaze: 18 Photographic Investigations" by Wayne Koestenbaum

ISBN: 978-1-932698-58-9 Cabinet Books

"Notes on Glaze: 18 Photographic Investigations" by Wayne Koestenbaum

I'm a fan of Wayne Kostenbaum's writing - especially when it is something like "Notes on Glaze."  The very interesting journal and publisher, Cabinet Books, had Koestenbaum do a regular column where they send him anonymous photographs and in turn, he would comment on them, or more in detail, he uses the series of images as a foundation to reflect ideas, culture, and a bit of memoir writing as well.   Not knowing their source or who took these photos, gives Koestenbaum the license to write short essays/commentaries on each image, and in a fashion, the photographs serve as an entrance way into the author's mind. 

While reading this book, I felt compelled to do my own version of "Notes on Glaze," using the same images.  Mine would be totally different from Koestenbaum, which strikes me as something profound.  What we are getting is not information about these 'abandoned' photos, but the process and results of Koestenbaum's thinking pattern and he develops these ideas to make commentary or narratives out of them.   So in a way, "Notes on Glaze" is a writer's notebook.   I think anyone who writes, would benefit from this book.  Not genius like, for instance Joe Barnaird's "I Remember," but still an important process and tool.  So along the lines of Brainard and Raymond Queneau's "Exercise in Style", this is very much a remarkable book. 

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