memorial

Healing Kaddish for Emanuel “Manny” Pushkin

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

Kaddish, Requiem, Life for Manny Pushkin

 

Uncle  Emanuel “Manny” Pushkin in his Home with my Father, 2011, Miami.

 

 

I received a message via Facebook from my brother on the passing of my beloved uncle Manny Pushkin. His influence over my heart, and my photography have made me the photographer that have become.

I remember going to his home off Old Cutler Road and walking in the large double doors and being surrounded by art.  Not just paintings but most specifically photographs.  Uncle Manny had a passion for photography that captured my imagination.  I was amazed at how light and shadows danced in his  photographs.

When the time was right we would all shuffle into his study.  We would on the floor as he dimmed the lights to watch a slide show from their most recent trip.  We would be swept away to the golden hour sunsets of Bryce Canyon, the snow capped peaks of the Rocky Mountains.  We sat in the darkness and just marveled.  It was magic to my heart and eyes.  I still hear that gentle roar of the kodak projector, the kachunk of the changing slides and his beautiful sweet voice reliving the stories of his and my Aunt Claire’s travels.  “I want to do that,” I said to myself.

My mother once asked Uncle Manny how come all his pictures came out so well.  He replied, “Linnie, I don’t show people my bad photographs.”  This nugget of knowledge has stuck with me all the years.  The most important part of the editing process is to be selective about what you show others.

Technically I didn’t learn much from him, but I did learn that one has to have passion for life to be an artist.  He embraced life with such a passion.  He would from time pass off some of his old and equipment to me.  I still have the cameras he has given me.

He made everyone feel special.  He always wanted to know about what we were doing what we are thinking about.  I always received a birthday greeting even though I am now have become a man.

Later in life after retiring he had a new passion for butterflies.  He and Claire planted plants that attract butterflies.  For him it was never what can the world do for him, but it was always what can he do to make the world a more beautiful place.

I know that all of the hearts that he touched will shed a tear, and remember all the joy that he brought into the world.  I will always miss his warm heart.  His ability to communicate with anyone. For me as an artist, I would not be where I am today without sitting in the darkened study, and gazing up at his images.

My heart goes out to my Aunt Claire, My Cousin Joanie, My mother and all whose hearts he touched..  We miss you.

A Day in the Country at Kawamura Museum

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

I love my adopted home of Tokyo, but I love heading out of it every now and then.  I sometimes forget that there is a world out there in Japan that isn’t an urban jungle of concrete and iron.  We decided, at the suggestion of a close friend, to visit the Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art in the sticks of Chiba prefecture.  My peeps in Japan that have never been there it is definitely a place to explore.

I was pleased to see a world class collection that included Rembrant, Chagal, and a room filled with maroon colored Rothkos.  Unfortunately half the museum was closed as they were prepping for a László Moholy-Nagy show that opens in a few days.  I was a little miffed, but it is a good reason to go back to the museum to see the other half of the collection that I missed.

The highlight of the museum, for my artistic soul, was the painting David’s Dream by Marc Chagall, and the room filled with Mark Rothko paintings.  The Chagall was luscious in its colors, filled with spirited shapes that just floated in the space.  The movement with in the image was amazing.  I just sat and watched the painting as if it were a movie being told in 24 frames a second.  Those blue hues are just amazing.

The Mark Rothko Seagram paintings in a low lit room as they are suppose to be viewed was an exploration in the power of color.  Color that just seeps in through the eyes, and rolls around inside your spirit.  The muted colors fill the entire field of vision.  There is nothing to do but to surrender to the colors and let them flow through your veins.

There is a connection between these two artist.  They both use color to tell stories.  In the case of Chagall the stories come from his roots as a Jewish artist.  Telling stories through the color dances and the floating figures.  Rothko was stripped his paintings down to their pure color elements.  Color its self is the theme.  The colors dance and play with in our vision.  Striving for that mystical connection with the Creator.

After the museum we wandered around the large gardens.  A stroll trough a small cedar forrest.  A walk around a lotus and a lilly pond.  The skies were large and filled with a blue of the Chagall paintings, as cotton wisps of clouds speckled the color field.

A lovely day among art and nature. A perfect combination as the summer is quickly drawing to a close.  A mystical trip to the sticks of Chiba for art, skies, and mushrooms.

Sky Trees Henry Moore Sculpture Grass

Lillies Abstract

Sky Whisp Forrest Field Fence

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