Sometimes it’s the detail that tells the story. It’s cold, there’s a frost but the sun is up, it’s winter, but bright, November probably. All this from one photograph.
Taken through the window of the office block where I was photographing that morning, almost as Conan Doyle might have imagined it, although this was taken in 2013. Thinking whimsically, Tower Bridge opened in 1894, and Conan Doyle had killed Holmes off before the bridge formally opened, but I like to think that returning to London after his ‘death’ at the hands of Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls, Holmes might have become a regular user of the Tower Bridge.
Timing: sometimes you’re lucky and sometimes you’re not. This was my first visit to the Morro de Igreja, in the mountains above Urubici, on a fiercely cold September, when you could see forever, at least that’s how it felt. This is the coldest part of Brasil and I’d had to light the wood stove in my room where I’d stayed, not a surprise elsewhere but when I’d left the coast four hours earlier, I’d been in shorts. Three months later, though, this. Perhaps the first visit had been just too lucky and somehow the universal fairness had to even out in the end. Visibility was down to ten of metres, so what became interesting was close to, not distant. Sometimes you can’t choose the viewpoint, it’s chosen for you, to make of what you will.
Maya Lin is well known for her Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, DC. This is the last, and biggest of her Wavefield sculptures, at Storm King Arts Centre in New York State, 11 acres of reclaimed gravel pit contoured into an intensely moving and vibrant landscape, which needs to be seen from a distance, in good weather, in the right season, with the right light. That’s the magic of an outdoor gallery like Storm King (and Inhotim in Brasil) that a repeat visit would give a new way of looking at the same work.
Weaving in and out of bus passengers, tiffin (lunch) is carried from one vendor to his own stall in Mumbai.
The wiser traveller doesn’t go in the water nor do the locals, who stay on the beach (Juhu in this case, I think). The parachute and soldier are inexplicable but it’s why I clicked the shutter at that moment.
Waiting for a ferry in the hazy heat behind the Gateway of India in Mumbai, there is a mix of the slow (the ferry) and the fast (the mobile phone).
At night in Mumbai the bus breaks down and we return by tuk tuk, sometimes on the road, sometimes on the pavement. In India this makes perfect sense.
The true architect of the capital, Brasília, wasn’t Oscar Niemeyer but Juscelino Kubitschek, popularly known as JK, the President of Brasil from 1956 to 1961. From a pedestal high above his mausoleum, his statue looks out over the city that he, Juscelino Kubitschek, was the real father of.
The Museu Nacional is one of Oscar Niemeyer’s iconic works in Brasília. They’re all iconic, the whole city is. Not just Niemeyer deserves the credit but Lúcio Costa, the planner and the landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx, with the the 30,000 construction workers who built a modern city in 41 months.