Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Idea of Farmhouse No. 2

ALFRED STIEGLITZ (as quoted by EDWARD WESTON): "A maximum of detail with a maximum of simplification."

PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL: The kitchens are gone, the old ones with the great chimneys that rise and embrace the house so that whatever gets cooked in the hearth or oven tastes of cast iron, and is digested first to fuel the next day's work, and then passed down to fuel generations. Families lived on everything that got canned there and on the bread that was baked daily, and arms got strong hauling kettles and washing laundry and the lessons learned were serious, the recipes passed down, tasty.

The old kitchen was in the ell until July when the women escaped to the summer kitchen. What lore, what culture blossomed in the dooryard with the lilacs and the chickens? No room has changed more or more constantly than the kitchen, not even the privy, and it's hard not to wonder how we've digested the changes.