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“As far as I am concerned, taking photographs is a means of understanding, which cannot be separated from other means of visual expression. It is a way of shouting, of freeing oneself, not of providing or asserting one’s originality. It is a way of life. “ Henri Cartier-Bresson


I need to allocate more time for play, culture and exploration. For together they make for wonderful days. Days balanced by the laughter and noise of a water park at Southbank and the quiet contemplation of the Henri Cartier-Bresson exhibition at the Qld Art Gallery. Days enjoyed by Fiona, Cohen and myself. And surely days like this are wonderful experiences for a child learning about the world.


 Having studied Cartier-Bresson at University (once upon a time), it was a remarkable feeling to witness this collection, reverentially hung upon the gallery walls. Pages from books and slide projectors, brought to life in a way that only gelatin silver prints can master.


I thought the exhibition well curated and admired the grey walls, bentwood chairs and the quotes writ large upon the wall. The collection was selected as personal favourites of, and printing overseen by, Cartier-Bresson in the last years of his life. Not just an impressive photojournalist documenting historically important times and places, Cartier-Bresson’s works are technically brilliant with their tonal qualities, use of thirds, shadow, framing etc, but they are also simply beautiful exchanges between photographer and subject, summed up so well by the phrase used to characterise his work – ‘the decisive moment’,” which can illustrate action, emotion and an entire story in a single image.” ( Taken from the wall of the gallery.)


$12 well and truly well spent and if you find yourself in Brisbane City at some point this month, certainly an exhibition I would recommend. (So too the new water park at Southbank, which Cohen adored, his smile plastered to his face much as his hair was plastered to his head. No photographs I’m afraid, as I was just as soaked as Cohen.)


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