Ending at the beginning

Posted by on Sep 27, 2011 in Gail Quagliata | 2 Comments

Man Ray was the photographer who made me want to be a photographer when I was a 15 year old who had just enrolled in Photography and was trying to make sense of my grandmother’s well-worn Olympus. I think I liked him so instantly because his work seems exotic and intangible when you’re 15 and wishing you were anywhere but where you are (sorry, Omaha in the late 90s). Surrealism is a good place to camp out when reality is SO EXHAUSTING and I think most 15 year olds can identify with the need for escapism.

I’m not sure if this was the exact image that made this click in my brain, but I definitely tried to replicate it the minute I found a friend with an accordion, just as I tried to make increasingly complicated photograms as soon as I convinced my mom our laundry room needed to be a darkroom and she relieved a friend of her barely-used enlarger.

Thank you so much for reading my blogs the past few months. You can view my photos at gvbq.org, you can read my writing most months in the Artseen section of the Brooklyn Rail, and you can find me wandering around New York with a Nikon (until I hit the lotto and finally get that Leica S2)(unless you have an S2 you aren’t using)(please send it to me)(thanks).

Gail Victoria Braddock Quagliata


  1. John Stanley
    October 9, 2011

    Thank you so much Gail! You have to post your photograms here someday soon!

  2. Allen Frame
    October 16, 2011

    I loved your posts. This last one was very amusing. I didn’t know who Man Ray was when I was in high school. My big example of a photographer was my father’s friend, a National Geographic photographer named Dan Guravich who lived in our town, Greenville, Mississippi. Then there was the portrait photographer who lived down the road, whose studio and darkroom were so glamourous to me. My best friend in high school was her assistant, but at the time it never occurred to me to pick up a camera and take pictures myself. Anyway, I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog entries and hope you get that Leica you want.