Sunday, April 08, 2007


A Saturday pondering man-made things. A trip to the camera store to check on fine art photo printing. Researching internet provider info for a friend whose internet connection and email are not working. Working with photos in Photoshop—trying to find the balance between aesthetics and technology, where they can meet in harmony.

Later C and I watched a video about the Brooklyn Bridge, the man who envisioned it, his son who carried the vision through despite corrupt politics and criticism, and the inspiration it has given so many. It’s an example of the balance between aesthetics and engineering (technology of that era).

Afterwards we discussed aesthetics, engineering and architecture; inspiration of certain man-made structures on the spiritual and the artistic; artists who crave the big city and those who must leave it for some place less assaulting on their senses. Georgia O’Keeffe, for example, who made alluring paintings of skyscrapers of the NYC night, but eventually fled to the New Mexican desert where she studied skulls, solitary rock structures, and the sky.

It all pinged my curiosity and I looked up the Brooklyn Bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge (which Frommer’s touted as “possibly the most beautiful, certainly the most photographed, bridge in the world", the Empire State Building (which has a cool website that includes streaming webcam views of NYC), and the doomed 1940s Tacoma Narrows bridge (which did not collapse due to substandard materials or construction, but because of the “physical phenomenon of resonance,” according to a physics website by Benjamin Crowell. The effect of resonance is the “same effect that allows an opera singer to break a wine glass with her voice and that lets you tune in the radio station you want.”)

Resonance—a complex word. A quality of being resonant, a richness or significance. A term pertaining to oscillation and sub-atomic particles, acoustics, linguistics, medicine and chemistry. All having to do with movement, whether it be emotional, aesthetic, or physical—or all occurring simultaneously. Maybe one of our goals in life is finding resonance; with people, places, work, and ourselves.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I find myself searching for resonance every day, sometimes in a familiar spot, other times in the strangest of places.....