Brass Valley: The Fall of an American Industry

Brass Valley: The Fall of an American Industry
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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Shroud Room or Composition in Blue and Brown



PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL:  There is an odd corner at the Klotz Silk Mill that I don't recall seeing in any online photographs, in part because it is hidden until one swings open an awkward door. As everywhere, things have been left as they were on that day in 1957 when the mill ceased operations. Here, coarse cloth (cotton?) has been carefully hung for a purpose unknown. What was it used for?  There's nothing like it anywhere else in the mill. Here it sits, ready for use on a day that never came for a purpose forgotten.

I'd missed this spot until our last morning in the mill, and, frankly, if I had seen it earlier I would have judged it unpromising and moved on, perhaps wisely. However, by that last morning I had the leisure to take the challenge of an unlikely discovery. How to compose it and develop it so that it might at least hold ones eye? The room was tight; bright sunlight glared from behind the fabric but barely illuminated it. I thought, why would anyone take a picture here?

One of my shooting colleagues arrived in the room at the same moment but from another direction, and we each took turns shooting and trying to make something of our discovery. 





2 comments:

Ginnie said...

I'm so glad you went back to take this shot, Ted, because it's full of "presence." It does make you wonder WHAT it was all about!

Emery Roth II said...

"Full of presence." Another viewer said spooky. I think the title helps. Perhaps someone will answer the mystery of what they were for.