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ISSUE

99

Esta semana na Foto da Semana:

"The crying (gypsy) boy"



this weeks photo of the week
[85mm f/5.6 1/400s ISO 400]

Starting from the 1950s a particular painting and variants of it (the original painter is said to have had about 27 orphans posing) became very popular. Many a household in Europe had a version of it hanging on a wall somewhere in their homes. Although the origin of the boy depicted in the painting is not clear, the image became known as 'gypsy boy with tear' or 'the crying gypsy boy', at least in The Netherlands.

[google 'crying gypsy boy painting' and the iconic one will pop up first]

This image reminded me of that wildly popular but almost disappeared dramatised portrait of a little boy in raggy clothes and heavy led-filled tears on its cheeks. A cliché of an image nowadays, not appropriate anymore as it was back in the cold war days after the second world war. In the nineties it had a bit of a revival as an iconic kitsch image in some of the 'retro' circles. Since then I haven't seen it around anymore.

This photograph (above) I took reminded me of it because of the dried up tear on this boys right cheek, still glimmering. This image does not tend to convey the same or even try to copy the original 'boy with tear'. In fact, because of the different setting, expression and medium (photo instead of painting), it is part of a whole different vocabulary. In this case we are instead looking at a boy that is enthusiastically and happily playing around, and well, where there is play, a fall is ever close. After a good scare, a primal outcry, the pain whithers away, the mood and attention returns to the joy of playing. That exact moment from hurt and misery, big fat crocodile tears to recuperation and towards running, laughing and enjoying was captured here..
It is thus a far more optimistic and positive image.

But still, that tear links the one image to the other. So what would this image look like if we try to mimic the visual and emotional message of the original 'gypsy boy in tears'?


this weeks photo of the week
[after some photoshop]

Until the next Photo of the Week!

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Texts and photography –unless stated otherwise–
all rights reserved © 2010-2012 Maarten Zeehandelaar

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