Already, just going from Tenth at 13th Street up to 20th Street I see that I'm looking at these photographs with eyes that know this neighborhood rather well, so that I'm seeing them very much in the context of my prior knowledge —
— amazing what's become of the formerly very grotty Meatpacking District
— now moving up into the Chelsea art gallery district (I remember when this was absolutely nothing, and all those galleries were in SoHO)
Of course, just at the very beginning, at 13th Street, I took the two corners again early in 2010 and can't help wanting to make comparisons of the "then and now" type.
Is the discipline to disallow that sort of digressive thinking or is it rather to encourage it and see where it leads? Don't know yet. At least for a while I think I'll let everything lead me wherever it goes.
Finished the fast pass around 7:35 PM and I started around 7 PM so about 35 minutes to race through 649 photographs, whew.
This was mostly meant just as a sort get reacquainted, so no systematic result, except as indicated, a sense of the different levels of looking/responding to the pictures, depending on how much I'm paying attention to the context I bring via "the eye's mind" (as I called it in a previous post), and how much of that is personal experience as opposed to general — I think I mean "book" — knowledge. And the difficulty of seeing what's in the pictures without too much reference to this context of prior knowledge.
Will try to look at them, going forward, at least in part, as if they were anywhere, and not where I know them to be, or for that matter, when.
Impossible to do in any absolute sense of course, but an orientation even to the impossible can maybe change "how things look" nonetheless, and thus sort of freshen up the eye.