IN REPLY TO "TALKING BACK" (9/30)
I was pleased to see Lowry's interview in The Source, and I am grateful to have the partnership of Deschutes Public Library in hosting her October 7th talk on Native American perspectives on Curtis.
In our mutual desire to have an informed discussion of Curtis, I would like to share how we at A6 are guiding the discussion. I also wish to clarify a few aspects of Curtis' work that continue to prompt questions and commentary.
Lowry stated, "I do not see the work of Edward Curtis as being anthropological."
I absolutely agree—when we are speaking of Curtis' art images.
Curtis was prolific in film, photography, audio recordings, and text—and these veins of work, while complementary, were not created to the same purpose. The text of Curtis' The North American Indian (all 2.5 million words) and Curtis' 10,000 audio recordings of chants, songs, and language are vital pieces of anthropological work. Curtis' 40,000 photographs offer endless clues of native life, but the beautifully composed photogravures in The North American Indian are works of art.
As we regard these images, Curtis' methods and motivations matter to us. (Why didn't Curtis show the "real" view of native life? Were the natives willing participants? Why are names left out of so many titles?) A6 has been offering a weekly exhibit tour (Saturdays at 4 pm) so viewers have a clearer idea of how and why this work was created.
Some may wish Curtis had used his camera to other ends. But Curtis was a maker of portraits, a recorder of the human spirit. His primary goal: to make these Native Americans "live forever"—with dignity and humanity.
Curtis is often criticized for staging his subjects, implying that the natives were passive in the image making. In fact, the staging was a joint effort. These men and women determined what they would wear for their portrait sittings. Many would take the risk and don their outlawed regalia.
There has been recent criticism on the omission of names in the titles of Curtis' prints. It is easy to perceive those omissions as negative.
Curtis was not "reducing individuals to cultural caricatures" as the Source article claimed. Rather, names were omitted out of respect. For many tribes, the idea of broadcasting one's name—the source of one's spiritual power—to a large and unknown audience was unthinkable. Several descendants of Curtis' subjects, while visiting our exhibit, have affirmed that their ancestors would have insisted on anonymity.
During his time with a tribe, Curtis would take days or weeks to understand the essence of a person before pulling out his camera. His patient study does not belie the laziness of one pursuing quick, shallow caricatures.
We invite you to visit our exhibit. You find images of complex, nuanced human beings—their presence almost palpable. And they live on as Curtis intended.
—Dawn Boone, Executive Director, A6
IN REPLY TO "FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHT TO PARTY" (9/30)
My family and I love going to the Riverside Market. There are very few places that offer child-friendly venues. It's pretty much Crux, Riverside, and Goodlife (where a parent can have a beer). I love that it is on a quiet street and within walking [distance] to parks and the river. It would be a shame to lose it!
—B via bendsource.com
This issue seems to be about whether or not Bend will allow a pub/bar in the middle of a residential neighborhood, and all that comes with it. It seems clear that this is more than just one, two, or three neighbors' complaints. I've read the testimony and matched with the hearing testimony and there are many disgruntled neighbors who have lived in the neighborhood for a long time (12-18 years), well before the Riverside apparently decided to illegally expand their operation outdoors. The initial code enforcement complaint about this business that I read had at least 35 neighbor signatures. The question is: is this the right business for an otherwise strictly residential neighborhood? Most of the myopic comments on this thread would indicate that it is not the right business for a residential neighborhood. Perhaps Galveston, or Newport would be a better fit. And to be fair, the Riverside's property was purchased in 2012 for $300k, so the real beneficiaries to allowing this conditional use permit will be the property owners and related investors. Who knows what they would create once they have an actual permit for outdoor seating and drinking- the neighbors have put up with a lot of issues while they haven't had one. We'll see...
—Bendfam via bendsource.com
It's better to have an alcohol-fueled business in the neighborhood where people can walk home rather than having all the bars and restaurants in a commercial district so everyone has to drive home.
IN REPLY TO "YOU CAN, BUT YOU SHOULDN'T" (9/30)
Of all the issues in CO, I feel it important to write and congratulate The Source Weekly for the stance taken on the Confederate Flag.
Having been born on the South Side of Chicago, being "raised" on my grandfather's Iowa farm, and going to school in Michigan, I was rather surprised to hear, "Yankee go home" and deeply held racial slurs from fellow engineers when I got a job in Memphis in 1983. I proceeded to receive and observe the same sad, and at times scary mindset while living in Atlanta and Charlotte, N.C., and came to realize that the SE and the Southern culture, was, for me, not welcoming.
I cannot comment of current events in other parts of the world. I can appreciate the historical ideas behind symbols and their part in human kind. This is not a PC issue. I support the statement and the view of the presentation of the Confederate Flag, "...that racism has no place in OUR COMMUNITY."
So what is the author's opinion of the Mexican flag and Cinco De Mayo celebrations? Beyond the obvious prejudice the author towards the southern states the question has to be how does the author know what is in someone's heart. This article is just another cowardly hit piece by the Source. The author/authors did not even have the conviction to give their names. Typical liberal cowards.
Editor's Note: As is standard journalistic practice, Source editorials are written by the editorial board and are generally not signed as they represent the perspective of the newspaper rather than a single individual.
IN REPLY TO "SMOKE SIGNALS" (9/16)
All you have to do is change the words "Central" with "Eastern" Oregon, Steve. The reality is, only an area the size of the state of Rhode Island will there be the "legal" sales of recreational marijuana. I live in Union County. As of today (October 1st), I'd have to drive an average of 490 miles round-trip to purchase the "legal" stuff. Thanks Legislature!