NOTES FOR A BOOK (DEAR MICHAEL,)

 

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), work in progress, 2016

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), work in progress, 2016

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), photographic installation with 89 black and white photographies on baryte paper and 5 letters, a drawing by Michael Höpfner, 40x70 cm each, framed, total dimension variable, ed: 3+1 AP, 2016.

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), one black and white print on baryte paper 72x88 cm and one inkjet print on paper 72x88 cm, 2017. Unique Edition + 1 AP.

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), one black and white print on baryte paper 72x88 cm and one inkjet print on paper 72x88 cm, 2017. Unique Edition + 1 AP.

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), one black and white print on baryte paper 72x88 cm and one inkjet print on paper 72x88 cm, 2017. Unique Edition + 1 AP.

Notes for a book (Dear Michael,), one black and white print on baryte paper 72x88 cm and one inkjet print on paper 72x88 cm, 2017. Unique Edition + 1 AP.

Harlem, 347 W 123rd St, Monday March 14, 2016

Dear Michael,

        I’m writing to you from the redbrick house in Harlem on 123rd Street, not far from Columbia University. I’ve just written a few lines to you and Davide to start to figure out how to proceed with regard to the exhibition that we’ll be doing together at Michela’s next September in Venice. I’m a bit ahead of schedule, and over the last few days I’ve felt that a number of thoughts linked to our past collaborations – and future ones as well – have been starting to take shape.

As I mentioned in my last email, I’ve decided to start carrying out inspection surveys around the perimeter of Manhattan. I started cycling around the island three days ago because I wanted to understand what parts could be walked along by the river and what parts couldn’t. Despite the fact that I’ve crossed it in various ways a number of times, there’s a whole area north of East Harlem that is still unknown to me: Highbridge Park, which spreads out along Harlem River Drive; Inwood Park, where we ended up together after walking along the whole of Broadway in 2009, and the beautiful – albeit in parts still rather wild – Riverside West in Hudson Heights, where I came across a shop-window dummy sitting in front of a salt depot…

I have decided to try and walk around the entire perimeter of the city, along the shores of Manhattan, and see whether I can be back home before it gets too late into the evening. I don’t mind telling you that traveling around Manhattan on a bike instead of on foot gives me more of a sense of safety, especially along its outskirts, where it’s not uncommon – especially in the north – to come across fairly shady areas, and being somewhat isolated as well, that are not all that safe either.

I try to imagine myself strolling along Bobby Wagner Walk late in the evening in the dark, and I find the thought of it a little unsettling. I wonder what you think at night when you mount your tent in the middle of the desert. I think of the kind of darkness that enshrouds you when you walk for days on end all alone, far from the city, from its lights and sounds.

Perhaps only towards the end of Manhattan, where the island tapers off and comes to a halt before Inwood Park, can we still sense the darkness and the silence reflected in the murky waters of the Hudson River.

Antonio

film 1: march 28, 2016 / 9.15 / 125th street / west harlem piers – buildings / 1 shot / march 28, 2016 / 9.21 / between 125th and 126th street – chimney stack / rocks / interior / 1 shot / march 28, 2016 / 9.27 / between 125th and 126th street – black coat on railing / 2 shots / film 2: march 28, 2016 / 9.38 – 9.50 / 135th street and henry hudson pkwy – salt depot and sitting shop window dummy + brambles next to highway – signposts may be seen / 5-7 shots / march 28, 2016 / 9.56 / 145th street and hudson river greenway / passing barge / 2 shots / march 28, 2016 / 10.10 – 10.15 / 155th street and hudson river greenway / three big rocks + garbage can on pelota field / 4 shots / film 3: march 28, 2016 / 10.27 / 178th street / washington bridge and hudson river greenway / tree / 1 shot / march 28, 2016 / 10.35 / 178th street / washington bridge and hudson river greenway / glass monolith on new jersey shore and piece of wood stuck in sand / 4-5 shots / march 28, 2016 / 10.55 / 179th street / washington bridge and fort washington park / tree on river / 1 shot / film 4: march 28, 2016 / 11.05 / 179th and 180th street / net behind leaves, railroad / 2-3 shots / march 28, 2016 / 11.20 / 180th street and fort washington park, descending towards river / tent / 2 shots / march 28, 2016 / 11.27 / between 181st and 182nd street – fort washington park – above railway flyover / edge of road / 2 shots / film 5: march 28, 2016 / 12.00 / 190th street and hudson river greenway / fire – bricks – raft / 1-2 shots / march 28, 2016 / 12.30 / inwood park / canadian geese on baseball field / 3 shots / film 6: march 28, 2016 / 12.37 / end of inwood park / hudson riverbank – bridge – canadian geese – tree – rusty fence – end of manhattan – river waters – landscape / 5 shots / march 28, 2016 / 12.54 / end of inwood park / tree fallen onto road / 2 shots / march 28, 2016 / end of inwood park / dead branches on tarmac and river / 3 shots / film 7: march 28, 2016 / 14.30 / 216th street east and harlem river / rock – water – sun / 2 shots / march 28, 2016 / 14.46 / 205th street east and harlem river / end sign / 1 shot / march 28, 2016 /14.56 / between 2003rd street east and 199th street and harlem river / tree on river + goose / 3 shots/ film 8: march 28, 2016 / 15.17 / 178th street and harlem river drive / alexander hamilton bridge / 2 shots / march 28, 2016 / 15.27 / 164th street and harlem river drive / net gate closed with tree / 1 shot / march 28, 2016 / 15.35 / between 157th and 155th street / lighthouse on building roof / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 15.40 / 120th street and booby wagner walk / coca cola with lace and net / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 15.45 / between 111th, 106th street and bobby wagner walk / ugly blocks / 2 shots / film 9: march 30, 2016 / 15.54 / 96th street and bobby wagner walk / closed jetty – cardboard boxes / 2 shots / march 30, 2016 / 16.00 / 93rd street and booby wagner walk / bridge in randalls island park / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 16.05 / 90th street and booby wagner walk / bridge in randalls island park in far distance / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 16.18 / 85th street and john finlay walk / man sleeping on bench / 4 shots / march 30, 2016 / 16.31 / 81st street and john finlay walk / road closed and corner of redbrick / 2 shots / film 11 / march 30, 2016 / 16.44 / 75th street and john finlay walk / apple core on concrete table / 2 shots / march 30, 2016 / 16.51 / 70th street and john finlay walk / chimney stack in background + passing barge / 3 shots / film 12: march 30, 2016 / 17.01 / 60th street and queensboro bridge / river and bank / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 17.07 / 59th street and queensboro bridge / end / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 17.15 / 57th street east / a bronze boar / 4 shots / film 13: march 30, 2016 / 17.47 / 38th street east and first av. / empty / 1 shot / march 30, 206 / 17.54 / 37th street and first av. / distant chimneystack on riverside / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 18.02 / between 25th and 26th street and waterside plaza / small roundabout with trees / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 18.10 / 16th street and east river bikeway / along river / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 18.15 / 10th street and east river promenade / skyscrapers under construction / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 18.19 / east river promenade and williamsburg bridge / river with domino factory in background / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 18.27 / east river promenade and corlears hook park / chimneystack along riverside / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 18.37 / east river bikeway between market slip and catherine slip / bunch of flowers floating on river and small crooked tree on other side / 2 shots / march 30, 2016 / 18.40 / east river bikeway and brooklyn bridge / wall of brooklyn bridge from front / 1 shot / film 14: march 30, 2016 / 18.50 / east river bikeway and old slip / corner with skittles / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 19.00 / east river bikeway and new york vietnam veterans memorial / crane along riverside / march 30, 2016 / 19.05 / battery park / against the sun and statue of liberty – water against the light (central view) / 2 shots / march 30, 2016 / 19.20 / battery park / sunset – water – reflections / 1 shot / march 30, 2016 / 19.44 / battery park and charles street - pier 46 / darkness and lights on other bank / 1 shot / film 15: april 3, 2016 / 14.54 / 128th street and convent av. / end / 1 shot / april 3, 2016 / 15.00 / 128th street and convent av. / thin tree against wall of light-colored bricks / 3 shots / film 16: april 3, 2016 / 15.20 / 144th street and convent av. / corner / 1 shot / april 3, 2016 / 16.39 / 155th street and broadway / trinity church cemetery – celtic cross / 5 shots / april 8, 2016 / 15.00 / 133rd street between broadway and riverside dr. / closed shutters / 2 shots / april 8, 2016 / 15.35 / 14th street and riverside dr. / corner with capital / 1 shot / april 8, 2016 / 15.40 / 148th street and riverside dr. / railway steps / bacardi bottle / man on mattress / 5 shots / film 17: april 8, 2016 / 16.00 / 152nd street and riverside dr. / raised area from which washington bridge may be seen / 1 shot / april 8, 2016 / 16.25 / 155th street and riverside dr. / interior riverside 765 / internal gardens with abandoned play ground / 3 shots / april 8, 2016 / 16.45 / 158th street and riverside dr. / tree, steps / 1 shot / april 8, 2016 / 18.30 / 132nd street and side street / net with baguette stuck in it / 1 shot / film 18: april 11, 2016 / 15.30 / 126th street and riverside dr. / apple / 2 shots / april 11, 2016 / 15.49 / 128th street and riverside dr. / billboard with blonde woman and parking lot / 2 shots / april 11, 2016 / 16.00 / riverdale state park and 139th street / binocular on river / 1 shot / april 11, 2016 / 16.05 / riverdale state park and 139th street / wall painting: native american with umbrella and little girl on riverbank / 1 shot / april 11, 2016 / 16.20 / riverdale state park and 139th street / red apple on railing / 1 shot / film 19: april 11, 2016 / 17.05 / hudson river greenway and 175th street / wood with shadow / 2 shots / april 11, 2016 / 17.30 / hudson river greenway and 175th street / barbecue on river / 4 shots / april 11, 2016 / 20.16 / hudson river greenway and 55th street / light on coast / 1 shot / film 20: april 15, 2016 / 16.38 / riverside dr. between 116th street and 115th street / man reading on a hammock camouflaged among the trees / 4-5 shots / april 15, 2016 / 19.30 / hudson river greenway – pier 25 and moore street / plane landing behind buildings against the light / 2 shots / film 21: april 15, 2016 / 20.15 / hudson river greenway and 55th street / new jersey / 5 shots / april 15, 2016 / 20.40 / hudson river greenway and 63rd street / new jersey / 4 shots / april 15, 2016 / 20.40 / hudson river greenway and 83rd street / new jersey / 2 shots / film 22: april 16, 2016 / 13.52 / cloyster / tunnel and tall street lamp / 1 shot / april 16, 2016 / 14.02 / inwood park / man with white tee-shirt against the green / 5 shots / april 16, 2016 / 14.43 / fort tryon park / city seen from above / 1 shot / film 23: april 18, 2016 / 14.43 / highbridge park – edgecombe av. and 165th street / winding path / 2 shots / april 18, 2016 / 15.00 / highbridge park - historic high bridge / bridge with hooded woman from behind / 3 shots / april 18, 2016 / 15.20 / highbridge park / path with rock and project buildings behind / 2 shots / april 18, 2016 / 15.30 / highbridge park and 172nd street / corner / 1 shot / april 18, 2016 / 15.45 / highbridge park and 178th street / shoes hanging from tree / 2 shots / film 24: april 18, 2016 / 16.00 / highbridge park and 178th street / rock, fruit juice and building behind / 4 shots / april 18, 2016 / 17.13 / riverside dr. and 148th street / words with sticks on railroad / 2 shots / film 27: may 19, 2016 / 15.57 / harlem river dr. and 141st street / corner with trees and leaning railing / 2 shots / film 28: may 19, 2016 / 16.10 / harlem river dr. and 143rd street / garbage can / 1 shot / may 19, 2016 / 16.24 / lexington av. and 147th street / road sign and passing girls dressed the same / 3 shots / may 19, 2016 / 16.37 / adam clayton powell jr. blvd. and 153rd street / big mac / 1 shot / may 19, 2016 / 16.43 / macombs pl. and 154th street / tony / 1 shot / may 19, 16.59 / 16.59 / harlem river dr. and 184th street / big red and black building / 1 shot / film 30: may 19, 2016 / 17.35 / harlem river dr. and swindler cove / little reserve on river / 6 shots / may 19, 2016 / 17.55 / 9th av. and 202nd street / exotic fruit stand with hanging coconuts / 2 shots / film 31: may 19, 2016 / 18.19 / 9th av. and 205th street / wall painting costa rica / 2 shots / may 19, 2016 / 18.22 / 9th av. and 206th street / the end / 1 shot / may 19, 2016 / 18.22 / university heights bridge 207th street / bobby fish van / 2 shots / may 19, 2016 / 18.45 / 9th av. and 216th street / salt depot and big work boot prints + grass against light brick wall / 3 shots / film 32 / may 19, 2016 / 18.45 / 9th av. and 216th street / grass against brick wall / 2 shots / may 19, 2016 / 19.00 / 9th av. and broadway / hole in net + rock / 2 shots / may 19, 2016 / 19.12 / seaman av. and 207th street / jesus es la luz / 2 shot / may 19, 2016 / 19.20 / seaman av. and academy street / white eagle / 2 shots / may 19, 2016 / 19.37 / hudson river greenway and 180th street / tunnel and illuminated leaf / 2 shots / may 19, 2016 / 19.45 / hudson river greenway and 161st street / illuminated creepers / 1 shot

 

all images © Antonio Rovaldi