Friday, July 26, 2013
Do you know that inside the Earth there's another, a much bigger globe? I leaned this long time ago from "The Good Soldier Švejk" by Jaroslav Hašek, the book I love dearly.
All the years since I've got this piece of knowledge in my head, I had been looking for the unknown world, and finally, I discovered it. It's happened in 2007. I found this world, this another Earth in the photographs taken but never brought to light, left in the darkness, photographs on the old films forgotten in the vintage cameras, cameras shoved into nameless darkness of countless attics or garages. And if you think this another world is small and unimportant one, if you think that the so called "present" is much bigger entity, think again, because neither one is actually exists in the place I am sharing with you. Both of them, the "present" you know as you personal instant history, and the latent flickering-smoldering-glowing in the darkness possibilities of images somewhere on the forgotten rolls, both are equally non-existent, and as such, they are zeros, nihils, nones. They are the same. And the one I am talking about here may be even bigger, much bigger;-)
At least, it has surely became bigger last week, when I decided to develop the old Brownie-type roll I received from ebay seller in Alabama.
Well, what could be on the old roll from Heavenwood, Alabama? Most likely its...let me guess...Heavenwood, Alabama! Old cameras and old undeveloped films rarely travel long distances. Treated as sentimental artifacts of little significance at best or as something very close to the junk cluttering living space, they usually thrown away in storage until the end of times.
But, something very different emerged from the wet darkness of my tiny darkroom. I developed the roll in cold concentrated Dektol developer and got several low contrast but otherwise legible images, five frames total:
Two frames of the same view, taken from inside the car...found film classic.
Some houses visible here and there, trees (pines), not much to guess the time/place.
The last 3 pictures give something on both:
Now this is Japan, most likely post-war...let's look at fragments. The car in this picture:
is 1946' Ford Super DeLux Fordor sedan. This gives us the first date, 1946 or later.
The building in the pictures 3 and 5:
had been identified with help of my friend Yamasaki Ko-ji as the old, now demolished sumo hall in Tokyo:
The hall has opened its doors in 1950, at first it used the temporary entrance we see on #3, so our photos were taken somewhere around this time, most likely by US serviceman, future WWII veteran from Heavenwood, Alabama...one of so many souls populating now the invisible world inside the Earth -- the bigger one, the real one.