Noon — A biannual magazine which explores art and commerce in contemporary culture
Noon is a biannual magazine which explores art and commerce in contemporary culture
Issue 12. New Communities
SOCIETY (The Misapplication of Bleach)
The villagers did not exist in a vacuum. They had objects and language and consequence. They deduced use from what was disallowed. Bleach, stating that it was harmful to children and marine life, was used to feed the dogs. When the dogs died it was used to feed the cats. It was in this way that their world had shrunk.
I was recently introduced to a biologist who told me that she was only ten per cent human. “Most of the cells inside me are microbes: bacteria, fungi, archaea.” She touched her stomach lightly as she spoke. “There are trillions of us in here.”
FRICTION (Happy Flesh)
I am one of three transsexuals, stepping from the car. Jessie is out first. She looks incandescent to me, Instagram-able under streetlamps and the warm glow of brake light. But then maybe it’s me who’s well lit.
THEATRE (Notes From A Public Execution: Easter Week in Spain)
I once met a girl who told me she danced with Jesus every night. She’d put on some music, He’d appear, and then they’d dance together in her front room. The great Spanish mystic Saint Teresa of Avila once had a vision in which Christ appeared before her pulling the iron nails out of His hands, the bloody flesh still clinging to them. “I did this for you before you even knew me,” He said to her. “Imagine what I’ll do for you now that you love me?”
From 1971 to 1979, the eminent American photographer Stephen Shore travelled often through the United States, capturing the people, places and landscapes he encountered along the way. Aside from the large view camera he usually used, with him he frequently carried a 35mm Leica. The photographs he took on it were spontaneous, intimate and personal, interrogating the formal conventions of photography with a quick, deft hand and a quiet, powerful presence.
Transparencies: Small Camera Works 1971-1979 is a new book, published by MACK, which shares this body of work for the first time. It acts as an intimate reader, sitting comfortably alongside his more commonly known series Uncommon Places; the vocabulary is the same, but the language slightly different. We spoke to Shore about this unique catalogue over Zoom, from his home in Tivoli, New York, in week eight of the COVID-19 lockdown.
SUCCESSION (Chain Letters)
I have childhood-technicolour-vivid memories of my first chain letter. Copying out the words five times over was a welcome opportunity to practise my new handwriting. I cycled to the corner-shop to buy, lick and stick stamps and post my copies to friends of friends, and got so excited about the latter part that I forgot the former altogether. Waiting for responses felt like waiting for a shout into a deep, dark well to come ricocheting back to me. What I can’t remember – not one word, not an overview, nothing – is the content.
LEXICON (Community Contexts)
It was a crisp Saturday morning in early October and the white-haired man weighing my produce at the local farmers market had kindly warned me that if I consumed the small warted gourd in my hand I wouldn’t come back alive. I laughed nervously as my grand visions of trying a new vegetable and being adventurous in the kitchen quickly dissolved like quicksand. “Oh-h-h, really? O-o-kay, that’s good to know,” I responded in German nervously, while trying to ignore the customers behind me that were most likely not looking in my direction, “I’ll take it anyway.” I bought it as an act of atonement for my lack of knowledge pertaining to autumnal squashes. Sensing the man’s concern about my wellbeing, I surprised myself by making small talk with him for what felt like ten minutes. In the past seven years, I’ve lived in eight different flats across four neighbourhoods in Berlin – and this was the closest I got to feeling like I was a part of the local community. I was elated and walked home with a spring in my step.