Two girls with wet tee-shirts

Playing With Water

People become strangely uninhibited when they play with water in the street. I think it must be owing to one of our atavistic instincts, a distant memory of the amphibian origin of mammals. More likely, it’s because it’s a bit naughty and certainly very wet. April is the month for the Thai festival of Songkran, … Read more

Four Girls, Four Pigeons

Awkward Eating on the Street

If Osteria Francescana in Modena, Italy, represents the top of the food chain — in 2018 it’s No.1 among “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” — then the eating places I’m showing here are somewhere near the bottom. I mean no disrespect. In fact, I don’t particularly enjoy eating in expensive restaurants. Getting a table is … Read more

London, Under Reconstruction

There’s a fine Japanese short story by Mori Ogai called “Fushinchu” (“Under Reconstruction,” 1910) which describes the discomfort of living in the city when it’s being extensively re-built. I was reminded of this story on a recent walk around London. Everywhere I went there seemed to be men in yellow jackets: knocking down buildings, unloading … Read more

Deliberate Obscurity

When William Eggleston said “I am at war with the obvious” I don’t think he was recommending the deliberate embrace of obscurity. Yet it’s a measure of how far we’ve come that today a photographer can offer complex images with hidden meanings and unusual compositions — a long way from the “rectangle with an object … Read more