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  1. #101

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    I have always found Vivian Maier's story to be both beautiful and very sad. I think she did create photos just for herself. She was very talented and even her first work in France showed she had a keen eye. The Dali series is outrageous. Her self portraits are beautiful. I also wonder what she would think of the fame her work has now achieved today. I hope to one day see her prints but can only guess what/how she would have printed.

    I am not defending Noble's stance but the movie theater manager first mentioned she seem very reclusive and may have had mental issues. He was certainly no expert but did have 13 yrs of interaction with her. I also believe the mother also had issues and was institutionalized (I need to watch the video again). Vivian certainly did not have a normal childhood. The photographing or recording of her paychecks and documents did seem odd. She was known to hoard old papers. To me, this just adds another layer to the sadness to what I think was her life. I hope I am wrong and she lived a happy life as she wanted.

    David

  2. #102
    Newt_on_Swings's Avatar
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    It was an interesting fact to hear in the documentary that she was a hoarder. How she filled up her upstairs room in one house with so much clutter you had to weave around to enter and that it was so much weight the ceiling sagged and had to be reinforced with a jack. She left behind 5 storage lockers. Thats a lot of stuff, possibly the largest lockers there were in that facility? I mean who rents 5 small lockers if all of it can fit 1 or 2 large ones and would probably be cheaper? Her nonstop photography could have been an extension of her hoarding habits to capture and collect bits of her everyday life to be stored away.

  3. #103
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    If the question is "Was Vivian Maier a normal person?", I think the answer is "Of course not, just like anyone achieving extraordinary things in their life. Normal people do only normal things. It takes extraordinary circumstances and extraordinary people to do extraordinary achievements like the one she did". If you start categorizing every little differences of behavior and everyone's unique way of thinking and living, inventing a name of an illness for each category, you end up with the impression of being surrounded by abnormal people. Normality is a fuzzy concept. With a limited income, I understand easily how come she ended up not developing a significant amount of her negatives. I would guess most of the non-developed rolls are from her later days. I guess at some point she chose to spend her money in shooting film and renting storage to keep it. I think in the back of her mind she felt the need to create those images and let it have a chance to survive times. I believe she would be happy that after her death someone would find her pictures, develop and print them at last. I guess she didn't care for recognition, but I think she judged her pictures to have an inner value worth saving for the times to come. I'm looking forward to seeing the documentary by John Maloof because he has audio tapes she recorded, so maybe we can finally hear what she really thought.

  4. #104
    Ken Nadvornick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lionel1972 View Post
    If you start categorizing every little differences of behavior and everyone's unique way of thinking and living, inventing a name of an illness for each category, you end up with the impression of being surrounded by abnormal people.
    Sort of like the tendency to armchair diagnose every child that sits daydreaming out the classroom window on a warm sunny afternoon as being autistic.

    Ken
    "They are the proof that something was there and no longer is. Like a stain. And the stillness of them is boggling. You can turn away but when you come back they’ll still be there looking at you."

    — Diane Arbus, March 15, 1971, in response to a request for a brief statement about photographs

  5. #105

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    Lionel and Ken,

    I agree with both of your posts. It will be interesting to see the John Maloof documentary.

    David

  6. #106
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    This here is part 5 of the same documentary in higher quality. From around 8:56 to 9:40 a gentleman from Central Cameras speaks about her and her work.

    I agree with him 100% on what he says, especially about respecting her and work.
    Those who know, shoot film

  7. #107
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    ^ thank you for the link to that final part, I was curious about the ending. Very nice quality as well. It was a sad though, the people who saw her in her last years really painted a darker more withdrawn person. From the depressing news headlines and dirty trash bin images, to the descriptions of her carrying bags of clothes and books all day wandering back alleys. Really kinda depressing in the last few shots were of the printers working with her negatives in the darkroom, 2 big 16x20 prints of a self portrait, each to be sold at $4000 a piece. She was probably getting by for years on a tiny fraction of that every month, now others are cashing in, and cranking out these prints cookie cutter style...

  8. #108
    JimO's Avatar
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    original link

    Quote Originally Posted by IloveTLRs View Post
    This here is part 5 of the same documentary in higher quality. From around 8:56 to 9:40 a gentleman from Central Cameras speaks about her and her work.

    I agree with him 100% on what he says, especially about respecting her and work.
    the bbc is apparently still angry over that "thing" 200+ years ago, the link didn't work for me since i'm in the colonies. i much appreciated the upload to you tube and the pointer to it!

    after watching it certainly provided a lot more "data" to chew on. although it's not in the dsm, my diagnosis of anyone who can produce that many negatives of such high quality is crazy! I, for one, want to know how i catch that!

    jvo

  9. #109

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    I saw an extensive exhibit of some her work for sale in an exhibit in LA not too long after this story about her and her negs being purchased went viral on the internet. Many of the pictures were ones I had not seen before. While I think she was a fine photographer with some fantastic images, most of what I saw at this exhibit was fairly mediocre. I left with the strong feeling that the two men who own her negs were rushing to cash in on the hype by putting out whatever they had available at the time. I felt that they were doing Maier a disservice in this regard and was disrespectful to her memory. I cannot see how waiting until all of her work was processed and the very best printed and released to the public would have meant any financial loss to them.

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