Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Revisiting "The Gates"

Three years ago, renowned artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude electrified the art world -- and particularly New York City -- with their creation of The Gates in Central Park. Like all their previous large installations, The Gates was on display for only a limited time (16 days), and then it was dismantled and destroyed -- all 7,503 gates and their saffron-colored fabric panels. Only the memory -- and millions of photos -- remain.

For me, the work had an impact beyond its artistic one; it provided me with the subject of my very first video not involving grandchildren. Now I love my three grandchildren, but if this septuagenarian fashions himself as the Grandma Moses of the film-making world, he has to engage in subjects of more provocative interest than his children's children, however engaging the little tykes are.

So five days before the Feb. 12, 2005, opening of
 The Gates, I took my little camcorder down to the park and started shooting. I kept shooting until the last gate was dismantled. I then taught myself rudimentary video editing and scoring a video. The final result turned out to be pretty much as you would guess -- amateurish but earnest.

Undiscouraged and certainly not bowed, I have since moved on to larger and more professional high-definition camera equipment, immersed myself in powerful editing software, and and am ready now to write, direct, edit and score my magnum opus. Except for one thing. I'm lacking a story as compelling as
 The Gates. So until I find its equal, I'll have to settle right here for sharing with you My First Video -- The Gates. Click on the link below to see the six-minute video:

The Gates Video -- click here

And following are a few of the hundreds of still photographs I took of The Gates.

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The Gates - dog

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IMG_2318

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IMG_2289

IMG_2287


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