My images from Kara Walker’s “A Subtlety”
The first thing I noticed wasn’t the smell, of cloying sugar and molasses, something more…human…it was the sound. The cavernous, hollow-hum of voices reverberating, of the ghosts of machines and workers. Then, then the smell hits you, and then the boys greet you, and then there she is.
It’s a shame that some people felt the need to respond to her nudity with juvenile photos (pretending to hold her breast, giggling at her exposed backside), but I suppose that says more about the individuals than the work, or maybe both.
On the way out, or in, depending on how you view it, is one exposed hole in the wall. I’m curious if it was intentional, or just happenstance. It bears resemblance to a porthole, a porthole on a ship with a view of the other side of the river, of Manhattan, but more directly, of the housing projects, lined up like complicated dominos.