The photographer as fearless story teller

The highest compliment paid in the land of journalism, sez me, is to say that such-and-such a writer, Mike Royko in Chicago, say, or Carl Hiaasen in Miami, or Joseph Mitchell in New York, is/was "fearless."

Well, in the land of photography, no one in our time has been more fearless than Duane Michaels. (Not even Robert Mapplethorpe, who to my eye may have borrowed a bit from his predecessor.) Michaels dares to not just capture moments, but to portray his imaginings, even the silly ones, and yet never seems to lose that connection to his inner self, his yearning being. .

Now an exhibit of his work is on display at the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh. The New York Review of Books gives us just a taste of this in a delightful set of his slide shows, beautifully optimized for the web, called Midnight Movies for the Mind.

Since most of us won't make it to Pittsburgh in the next week or so, let me offer just a taste of Michaels' inimitable style, half-funny, half-sexy, always seemingly inspired.


This one from a show in l986 called The Bewitched Bee.

Published by Kit Stolz

I'm a freelance reporter and writer based in Ventura County.

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