Thursday, April 27, 2023

Dans la Nuit (Lovers)

Semi-fresh on the heels of Floating Figure (last month's rather stale public art post), here are a few photos of Dans la Nuit (Lovers), also by French-American sculptor Gaston Lachaise. It used to be outside the Portland Art Museum, on the right side of the main entrance, across from Floating Figure, having replaced Auguste Maillol's La Montagne around 2014 in conjunction with a temporary Lachaise exhibit. The two sculptures quietly went off exhibit or maybe left town sometime in 2020-21 while everyone was focused on the pandemic, and protesters were busy toppling statues of various dead presidents right next door in the South Park Blocks.

This post and its companion are another reminder that this humble blog does not aspire to be anyone's hub for breaking news: I took most of these photos back around 2014, shortly after the big Maillol-Lachaise swap-out, before the little nameplates were installed. Obviously I couldn't hit the big orange Publish button at that point, since I didn't actually know anything about the newly arrived art, so I saved a couple of draft posts with placeholder titles and moved on. A year or so later I was in the area and noticed the nameplates and duly took photos of them, but by then I'd moved on to other projects and just left it at that: I knew the photos were saved somewhere in either iPhoto or Flickr and I could probably find them again if I was in the mood to finish these posts, and I could always go back and take new photos if I genuinely couldn't find the older ones. Meanwhile fresh sedimentary layers of draft posts kept accumulating on top of this leftover art stuff from 2014, and eventually the art (and the nameplates) weren't there anymore, and Google was (as usual) pretty useless without already knowing the titles, or at minimum the artist. Then a few months ago I stumbled across the 'lost' nameplate photos during a brief, yet tedious, photo-organizing bender and remembered I'd been looking for them. So I added those photos to the appropriate photosets, updated everything with the actual names, did the usual internet research, even got some words in place... and then saved the posts as updated drafts, to languish for a few more months. Because, as it generally is with these things, taking the photos and researching and writing is ninety percent of the work, while editing is the second ninety percent of the work.