The name in the title might look familiar and that’s because the artist is my cousin. Today the New Bedford Whaling Museum is opening a show of Phil’s amazing collection of photographic portraits of New Bedford commercial waterfront workers. From the museum’s website:
Working Waterfront, Photographic Portraits focuses on local shoreside workers and their jobs: from fish cutter to purveyor, from welder to auctioneer, from lumper to inspector, as well as fishermen. Each person, each job, is vital to the daily operation of supplying seafood to market. All photographs were taken by Phillip Mello, mostly using a Mamiya RZ 67 camera with Kodak BW400cn Professional film. They are part of a project he began early in 2008 and which continues today: to photograph the local fishing industry through the people who work in it. Mr. Mello knows these people and this place well, having worked on the waterfront for over thirty-four years, currently as plant manager at Bergie’s Seafood. His photographs benefit from this closeness, and we are fortunate to have had these doors opened.
There’s an opening reception this evening after the Whaling Museum’s Annual Meeting and before/during their very popular After Hours Friday night social event. But in case you can’t make the event or have trouble getting to the gallery anytime soon, you can experience Phil’s work via the Whaling Museum’s Flickr page.
Phil is also the president of the New Bedford Port Society which owns and operate the Seamen’s Bethel, which first came to fame as the Whalemen’s Chapel in Herman Melville’s classic American novel Moby-Dick, as well as the historic Mariner’s Home.
Reproductions of photographs in the exhibit are available via the Whaling Museum’s photography department by contacting email@example.com. Proceeds from their sale will be split evenly between the Whaling Museum and the New Bedford Port Society.
It’s an amazing body of work that celebrates the spirit of the people who work anonymously on New Bedford’s commercial waterfront everyday. Thanks to Michael Lapides, the New Bedford Whaling Museum’s Director of Digital Initiatives / Curator of Photography for giving the community the opportunity to get this inside look and for creating a historical document that captures an important part of New Bedford today. And thanks Phil, the Mello family is proud!
Accompanying the article are some great images taken by Stephen Mallon, a photographer who specializes in industrial subjects and who was the only photographer who had exclusive access to the marine salvage operations. Interestingly, there’s an editor’s note stating: “Some of these images have been altered by Stephen Mallon to remove the US Airways logo at the company’s request.” Come on USAir, NTSB and AIG, do you really think that we wouldn’t notice?
Unfortunately Somali pirates have made big news again this week. Back on March 16, 2009, the Boston Globe’s The Big Picture blog covered this story with an amazing set of images that are worth revisiting. It’s really a sad story for all involved.
The New York Times has asked readers to send in their photos from around the world Picturing the Recession. They ask “How do you see the recession playing out in your community? What signs of hardship or resilience stand out? How are you or your family personally affected? Creative ways of documenting the changes around you are encouraged.” You can submit your photos here.
Earlier this week, the New York Times published a story about how the global financial crisis and economic recession is having an impact on boating in America.(Boats Too Costly to Keep Are Littering Coastlines) Always sad to see a derelict boat.
On Tuesday we posted about this historic USCG Boat House being temporarily relocated. (Historic Coast Guard Boat House Gets A Lift) Christiaan saw the post via Twitter and snapped this pic from his room at Mass Maritime at the tug and barge and boat house enter the Cape Cod Canal. Nothing like learning from experience!
We’ve been away on a family vacation in Florida, so that explains the lack of posts over the past week. But I can’t help but I can’t help keeping a lookout for all things maritime. On Saturday, Buppa (75), Luke (5) and I (somewhere in between) went to the Zephyrhills 35th Annual Winter AutoFest where there was a 1935 Plymouth Coupe in the Collector Car Auction which had these cool hood and grill ornaments.
Ramon Terrado is a oceanography student that I came across on the soon to close photo community / magazine website JPG where I was also a member. His work is amazing and his story is cool. (pardon the pun) Below the jump is an interview he did with JPG.
This is the last weekend to experience the Catherine Opie: American Photographer exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC. The show closes on January 7th. Here are a few of works from her Icehouses and Surfers series. To get a better understanding of this artists work, make sure you watch the great video on the Guggenheim website (hope they keep these links live after the exhibit closes.)
The most beautiful room pairs 14 landscape views of ice fishermen and their shacks on snowy frozen lakes in Minnesota with 14 seascape views of early-morning surfers bobbing in the Pacific Ocean along the misty Malibu shore. “Icehouses” (2001) and “Surfers” (2003) are monumental — more than 4 1/2 feet tall — and verge on abstraction.
Vast, grayish white expanses are striped across the middle with a horizon line and dotted with figures dwarfed by nature’s void. Both chart the shifting organization of temporary communities of sportsmen who have taken to the water, liquid and frozen. For land creatures this environment Opie possesses a distinct otherness. Play mingles with survival.