Jon Crispin's Notebook

A Saturday Post

Posted in Asylums, Family, Graveyards, History, Jon Crispin, Travel, Willard Asylum, Willard Suitcases by joncrispin on 30/03/2013

Here’s a bunch of random stuff.

On our last day in New Orleans we took the trolley out to the Garden District.  I was very happy to walk under The Pearl neon sign and see that it was turned on this time.

I have always liked wandering around graveyards and the Lafayette Cemetery was near to the trolley.

There is a great bookstore nearby and I was finally able to find a copy of Maira Kalman’s “And The Pursuit of Happiness”.  I have been looking for a while now, and was so happy to find it.  She sent me the nicest email about the Willard Suitcases and I was eager to see this book, as I really like her work.  I especially like that she mentions the numbered graves at Gettysburg since they are so much like the ones at the Willard cemetery.

We flew back very late into BWI and this is what I saw out the window as we flew over DC.

I had a great shoot on Wednesday with another amazing writer.  Poets & Writers asked me to photograph Neil Gaiman and he is the nicest guy.  I can not post any shots until the story runs sometime this summer, but I will as soon as I can.

And finally, we drive Peter to DC tomorrow to help him find a place to live and get him settled.  The usual melancholy has been creeping in and so I have been listening to a lot of Percy Grainger.  I have always been so taken with his music.  I seem to recall as a boy listening to a CBC program with my dad that used this piece as a theme.  Here’s another that I especially like.  The thing for me about Grainger is that there  is an element of sadness in his music in spite of the light-hearted feeling of the tunes.  He was a pretty out there fellow and the one quote of his that I think of often is him talking about his work.  When speaking of his use of harmony, he said “My efforts even in those young days, were to wrench the listener’s heart with my chords.  It is the contrast between the sweet and the harsh…that is heart-rending…And the worth of my music will never be guessed, or its value to mankind felt, until the approach to my music is consciously undertaken as a ‘pilgrimage to sorrows.'”

2 Responses

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  1. Hank. said, on 30/03/2013 at 7:04 pm

    Great photos as ever, Jon–and how cool to meet Neil Gaiman and correspond with Maira Kalman. Two favorites here for sure. The Willard project really has resounded on many levels, it seems; a sort of unexpected radiance.

    Hank is right now luxuriating on spring green grass in a splotch of fine sun and he sends his regards to The Pearl. Hope warm days are on the way to MA as well.

  2. Liza P from BC said, on 21/06/2013 at 2:38 pm

    The CBC program you refer to is our favourite children’s show, Mr Dressup I think (here’s a youtube of the opening: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vc1rOXravM ).
    Love the work you’re doing with the suitcases. Haunting and evocative. What an honour to be able to interact with all that history.


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