Saturday, March 27, 2010

kitchen still life

...and it wasn't even posed (though to be honest, I moved the coffee maker on the right hand side out of the way, because it spoiled the symmetry). Absolute ordinariness: two green glass candlesticks, one white kitchen towel, one red pepper, one speckled black granite counter-top, managing, in their symmetry, to look like towers, or dumb-bells - and the reflection of the paper towels looking like an egg cup.

I'm looking forward to getting to see the American Stories: Paintings of Everyday Life 1765-1915 exhibition at LACMA before it closes in mid May: looking at the accompanying book makes me wonder what could be made of the ordinariness here in terms of social history. Relative affluence (that counter-top); the southwestern preferences (the pepper) - but the candlesticks? Not only can I not remember where they came from, I can't remember which of us they belong to. We tend to have dinner by candlelight ( by inclination, not functionality), but no social historian could really tell that from this: what does get obliterated, through aesthetics, is the sheer functionality of the paper towel.

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