Simon Griffee · Design · Photography · Writing · Illustration

What: women

Feria di Sevilla, Seville, Spain, 2014

Maristella Lorch, New York City, 2019

Maristella Lorch, Founding Director Emerita of the Academy for Advanced Studies, with her daughter and friends shortly after her 100th birthday.

Broadway and 114th Street, New York City, 2015

Piazza del Colosseo, Rome, Italy, 2013

5th Avenue, New York City, 2017

Resisting, Reclaiming, Reframing Poster, 2019

One version of a poster for the upcoming Resisting, Reclaiming, Reframing Indigenous Communities and Art Museum Collections 2019 March 8 event at the Italian Academy organized by Elizabeth Hutchinson (Barnard College, Columbia University) with the Italian Academy’s International Observatory for Cultural Heritage. Co-sponsored by Columbia’s Department of Art History and Archaeology, Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race, and University Seminar in Indigenous Studies.

Nassau Avenue, Brooklyn, New York City, 2019

Pacing

Prehistoric cave paintings at Lascaux. I like play that slowly builds tension and then releases it with intensity and consequences. Maps. Sounds of nature. Long distances. The passage of time. Night and day cycles. Changing light. Clouds. Weather. Wind, foliage, animals, dust, fog, rain, lightning storms. A simple way to experience play is fiction. Games, books, music and films that tell us, a species of storytellers, stories, and help bring us closer, for art is a medium for creativity, a multiplier, which improves everything else needed for life.

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Near Tyrrhenian Coast, Italy, June 2017

Testaccio, Rome, Italy, May 2010

West 34th Street at Herald Square, New York City, September 2015

Choir at 42nd Street Station, New York City, May 2017

This one reminded me of the song Pancake by Tori Amos.

The Poison Arrows Out of Harm’s Way

Carl Sagan in the The Demon-Haunted World - Science as a Candle in the Dark, page 291: Among the !Kung San hunter-gatherers of the Kalahari Desert, when two men, perhaps testosterone-inflamed, would begin to argue, the women would reach for their poison arrows and put the weapons out of harm’s way. Today our poison arrows can destroy the global civilization and just possibly annihilate our species. The price of moral ambiguity is now too high.

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The Absence of Strong Women #
Frankenstein: The 1818 Text

From Charlotte Gordon’s introduction to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein: The 1818 Text:

…Ultimately, the absence of strong women holds the key to Frankenstein’s main themes. When women are not allowed to have a voice, or to play important roles in society, Mary implies, loss ensues. Unchecked male ambition will lead to destruction, injustice, and devastation.

Frankenstein is the story of one man’s obsession with the creation of life, and his subsequent abandonment of his creation. It is a study of guilt and innocence, creativity and destruction. But it is also a cautionary tale. By fearing the stranger, by abusing the vulnerable and the outcast, society creates its own monsters.

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42nd Street and 5th Avenue, New York City, October 2017