Cecilia Vicuña and Michael Halsband | Twilight Talks


>>THIS IS CUNY TV. THE TELEVISION STATION OF THE GREATEST URBAN UNIVERSITY IN THE WORLD. ♪ [THEME MUSIC] ♪>>AS IT SUNSETS AT THE END OF A NEW YORK WORKDAY THE MIND TRANSITIONS FROM DAILY TASKS TO THE CLOUDIER, MORE PHILOSOPHICAL REGIONS OF SOCIAL ISSUES, CULTURE, AND POLITICS. IN A DEMOCRACY, EVERY PERSPECTIVE IS IMPORTANT AND PEOPLE IN ART AND CULTURE HAVE SURPRISING BODIES OF KNOWLEDGE THAT CAN SHED LIGHT ON TODAY’S REALITY. ♪ [THEME MUSIC] ♪ THE FOLLOWING CONVERSATIONS WITH POET, ARTIST, AND FILMMAKER CECILIA VICUÑA AND PHOTOGRAPHER AND FILMMAKER MICHAEL HALSBAND TOOK PLACE AT THAT TIME OF THE DAY.>>CECILIA VICUÑA IS A CHILEAN POET, ARTIST, AND FILMMAKER BASED IN NEW YORK AND SANTIAGO. HAVING EXPERIENCED THE 1973 CHILEAN COUP D’ÉTAT, HER WORK ADDRESSES THEMES OF MEMORY, DECAY, AND EXILE. HER MOST RECENT MUSEUM INSTALLATIONS HAVE DEALT WITH ECOLOGICAL DESTRUCTION, CULTURAL HOMOGENIZATION AND THE PARTICULAR STRESSES THESE CIRCUMSTANCES PLACE ON THE POWERLESS. ♪>>I AM WONDERING WHY YOU LIVE IN NEW YORK CITY OR HOW YOU COPE WITH LIVING IN NEW YORK CITY WITH THE BEAUTIFUL DESCRIPTION YOU GAVE OF THE SOUND OF THE COUNTRYSIDE. DO YOU GO OUTSIDE OF NEW YORK CITY A LOT?>>I DON’T FEEL LIKE I LIVE IN NEW YORK. I FEEL LIKE I AM PASSING BY. IT HAS BEEN 40 YEARS. IT IS A LONG PASSING BY. WHEN I FIRST ARRIVED HERE, MY BUILDING WAS NEXT TO THE HUDSON RIVER. THE NOISE OF THE RIVER IS THE WILDERNESS I NEED.>>IS THAT WHERE YOU GET A LOT OF MATERIALS?>>I GET A LOT OF MATERIALS FROM NEW YORK STREETS. IT CAN HAVE A COMBINATION OF BONES, PLASTIC, METAL, THINGS FROM BROOKLYN, NEW YORK, — AMAZON, EVERYWHERE. IT’S NOT LIKE I ONLY WORK WITH THESE THINGS. THE WATER LEVEL OF HUDSON RIVER IS RISING CONSTANTLY. NOW ON HIGH TIDE IS THIS DISTANCE FROM THE SIDEWALK. VERY OFTEN, I PICK UP THINGS THAT ARE DEPOSITED ON THESE WALKWAYS NEXT TO THE HUDSON.>>YOU HAVE BEEN OBSERVING THIS FOR A LONG TIME. I WONDER IF IT IS SHOWING UP IN TERMS OF THE WAY CURATORS AND INSTITUTIONS ARE RESPONDING TO YOUR WORK. IT SEEMS LIKE FINALLY THE EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ARE APPARENT TO MOST PEOPLE IN SOME WAY.>>IT IS TRUE. I REMEMBER I WAS A NINE-YEAR-OLD GIRL WHEN I FIRST SAW IN A DREAM WHAT WAS COMING. THIS IS PART OF THE ANCIENT TRADITION THAT DREAMS FORETELL WHAT IS GOING TO BE. SOMEHOW, CHILDREN CAN TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE DREAM THAT IS JUST AN EXPRESSION OF FEAR AND AN EXPRESSION OF REALITY THAT YOU ARE MEANT TO BE A WITNESS OF AND HAVE TO BE PREPARED FOR. WHEN I WAS NINE YEARS OLD, IT WAS THE TIME I REALIZED I WAS A WRITER BECAUSE IN SPANISH WE HAVE A BEAUTIFUL WORD, “NÍTIDO,” WHICH MEANS THE VISION YOU SEE IS SO SHARP AND SO UNDENIABLE, YOU CAN TELL IT IS MORE REAL THAN THE REAL. WHEN I UNDERSTOOD THAT MY DREAMS HAD THAT QUALITY, I STARTED TO WRITE. SO, MY FIRST TEXTS ARE FROM AGE 9.>>WERE THERE PARTICULAR ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTERS WHEN YOU WERE GROWING UP THAT SET OFF THE DREAMS?>>NO, THE ONLY ONE HAPPENING AT THE TIME WAS EARTHQUAKES. EARTHQUAKES WERE NOT ASSOCIATED WITH CLIMATE CHANGE. THEY WERE SIMPLY ASSOCIATED WITH THE TECTONIC PLATES AND THEY WERE VERY VIOLENT EARTHQUAKES. AS A CHILD, I WAS EXPOSED FIRST TO THE SOUND. I WOULD LIE DOWN ON THE FLOOR SO I COULD HEAR THE EARTH. MY DOG WOULD START TO BARK.>>IT’S ALMOST LIKE AN ANIMAL INSTINCT TO FEEL IT OR SENSE IT BEFORE IT OCCURS.>>WHEN YOU THINK OF WHAT IS HAPPENING TO HUMANITY NOW, IT IS LIKE HUMANITY IS BEING TRAINED TO BE ENSLAVED, REDUCED, TO BE JUST AN EXTENSION OF THE MACHINE. IF YOU GREW UP IN KANSAS, — AS I GREW UP IN CHILE — WE HAD A DIFFERENT TRAINING TO BE ALERT. IT’S A CRIME AGAINST KNOWLEDGE, A CRIME AGAINST THE UNIVERSALLY DIVERSIFIED KNOWLEDGE OF PEOPLE’S.>>EXOTIC IN A GOOD WAY. NOW, THERE IS ALMOST A DEMONIZATION OF THE IDEA OF THE EXOTIC AND THINGS BEING DIFFERENT. THE GLOBAL SYSTEM WANTS EVERYTHING TO BE THE SAME SO IT CAN BE TRADED.>>CONTROLLED AND EXPLOITED. IT HAS EXPLOITED THE MIND THAT HAS TAKEN OVER THIS PLANET. IF IT CONTINUES THAT WAY, THERE WILL BE NO PLANET.>>I THINK THE USE INCREASINGLY OF TOXIC MASCULINITY AND THAT SORT OF THING, THAT IS THE TRUE EVIL UNLEASHED ON THE LAND.>>THAT IS PRETEND MASCULINITY. BECAUSE I KNOW BETTER. I LIKE MEN. I ALSO LIKE WOMEN, BUT I LIKE MEN. THE MEN I LIKE ARE NOT LIKE THAT AT ALL. I WAS BORN IN THE 1940s. IN THE ’40s, ’50s AND ’60s, ALL THE WAY UP TO WHEN THE MILITARY COUP WAS IN CHILE, CHILEAN CULTURE WAS THE CULTURE OF — COMMUNITY. YOU WORKED FOR THE COMMON GOOD. THIS WAS AN ETHICAL CODE AND EVERYBODY, RIGHT, LEFT, IT DIDN’T MATTER, RELIGIOUS, NON-RELIGIOUS –>>VALUE SYSTEM.>>EVERYBODY BELIEVED THAT WAS A NECESSITY, THE MAIN PART OF LIFE. THE WAY YOU BEHAVED TOWARDS OTHERS, ESPECIALLY PEOPLE WHO ARE VULNERABLE. I REMEMBER THE DISASTERS IN EUROPE AND SPAIN AFTER THE DESTRUCTION OF THE REPUBLIC. MY FAMILY WAS AMONG THE FAMILIES THAT RECEIVED REFUGEES, JEWS AND PEOPLE FROM THE SPANISH CIVIL WAR. SO MY FAMILY GREW UP WITH THE REFUGEES BEING PART OF THE FAMILY. WHEN I THINK BACK OF HOW INCREDIBLY BEAUTIFUL THAT WAS, THE RICHNESS, PEOPLE I CONSIDERED MY UNCLES, AND THE LOVE PEOPLE SHARED AND GRATITUDE HAS LASTED A LIFETIME. THIS IS WHAT WE ARE NOW DESTROYING THE POSSIBILITY OF WELCOMING THE POSSIBILITY OF ENJOYING. THE OTHER CAN ONLY BRING BEAUTY AND GRATITUDE BECAUSE THEY COME FROM SUFFERING. THESE PEOPLE IN CHILE GAVE SO MUCH. CULTURE, THE ARTS, LITERATURE, CINEMA, EVERYTHING BENEFITED FROM THEIR ARRIVAL. AND THE SAME HAS HAPPENED HERE. YOU ASKED ME WHY I LIVE IN NEW YORK. I AM THE EMBODIMENT OF THE UNWANTED ONE. DARK, LITTLE WOMAN, INDIAN, EVERYTHING. I COULD SAY THE REASON WHY I HAVE STAYED, I ONLY CAME HERE FOR A PERFORMANCE. I NEVER MOVED TO NEW YORK, NEW YORK MOVED TO ME. BASICALLY, I WAS WELCOMED BY A CERTAIN KIND OF PEOPLE THAT MAYBE ONLY EXIST IN THE U.S. THE PEOPLE WHO GO AGAINST THE TIDE. THE PEOPLE WHO BELIEVE AT ALL COST THAT THIS IS WRONG. I DIDN’T THINK, OH, I WANT TO STAY. I JUST STAYED. IT IS LIKE I BELONGED SOMEHOW TO THOSE WHO WERE INTERESTED IN HEARING THE STORIES, HEARING THE POEMS, HEARING THE SONGS AND HEARING WHAT IT WAS THAT WAS COMING WITH ME. ESPECIALLY BECAUSE CHILE HAD BEEN DESTROYED BY THE U.S.. PEOPLE ALWAYS ASK ME HOW COME YOU ARE HERE WHEN THIS IS THE COUNTRY THAT DESTROYED YOUR FAMILY?>>THAT IS AN IMPORTANT POINT TO EMPHASIZE, THE COUP D’ETAT WAS BACKED BY THE U.S. FOR WHAT REASON, I ASSUME TO INCREASE MARKETS IN CHILE.>>TO DESTROY THE POSSIBILITY OF A TRUE PARTICIPATORY DEMOCRACY. THEIR CLAIM WAS TO DESTROY COMMUNISM BUT IT WAS NOT COMMUNIST BY ANY MEANS. SALVADOR ALLENDE, WAS A DEMOCRATIC-SOCIALIST. HE WAS FOR JUSTICE WITHOUT PERSECUTION. IT WAS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL EXPRESSION OF FREEDOM EQUALITY. I WAS 21. I ALREADY HAD A TV PROGRAM REACHING EVERYBODY IN CHILE. AT 22, IT WAS AN EXHIBITION IN THE MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS. MY POEMS WERE PERFORMED TO 5000 PEOPLE. IT WAS AN AMAZING CULTURE THAT WAS DESTROYED. NOW CHILE IS MORE LIKE THE U.S. SO NOW WE HAVE A CONSERVATIVE GOVERNMENT AND THE ONLY VALUE IS MONEY. MONEY AND EXPLOITATION.>>I LOOK AT THE CURRENT POLITICAL SITUATION AND WONDER HOW STRATEGICALLY THIS VOICE CAN BECOME INTO THE CONVERSATION IF IT DOESN’T REQUIRE ALMOST AN UTTER COLLAPSE OF THE EXISTING POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC SYSTEM TO ALLOW THIS RESURGENCE OF OLD WISDOM.>>WE SHALL SEE. WE SHALL SEE IN THE NEXT 10 TO 20 YEARS. I THINK THE DESTINY OF THIS PLANET WILL BE DECIDED IN PEOPLE’S HEARTS.>>OR RULED BY ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE. IT IS RIGHT ON OUR DOORSTEP.>>PEOPLE BELIEVE ALGORITHMS ARE THE TRUTH AND ALGORITHMS ARE REALLY OPINIONS. THEY ARE TOOLS TO MAKE YOU BELIEVE WHAT THE CREATOR OF THE ALGORITHM BELIEVES. PEOPLE ARE BEING MANIPULATED BY ALL KINDS OF FAKE INFORMATION. FAKE NEWS. THINK OF THE ELECTION IN BRAZIL. IT WAS MADE THROUGH FAKE NEWS. IT WAS MADE THROUGH THE MANIPULATION OF INFORMATION. IF WE BECOME AWARE OF THAT, THERE IS A CHANCE. WHAT SHAPE, WHAT FORM IS THIS TRANSFORMATION FROM THE FORCES MANIPULATING THE WORLD TOWARD DESTRUCTION, WE HAVE NO IDEA. BUT THAT’S PART OF THE BEAUTY.>>HOW AFRAID SHOULD WE BE AS AMERICANS OF THIS PARTICULAR PRESIDENT IN TERMS OF DICTATORSHIP?>>VERY AFRAID, BUT FROM FEAR NOTHING CAN BE GAINED OTHER THAN INFORMATION THAT THIS IS THE TRUE DANGER AND IT IS FAR MORE DANGEROUS THAN AMERICANS BELIEVE BECAUSE IT IS A DISGUISED DICTATORSHIP AND THAT IS FAR WORSE THAN AN OPEN DICTATORSHIP. ♪>>CECILIA VICUÑA IS ONE OF 10 ARTISTS TO RECEIVE THE UNITED STATES ARTISTS 2019 FELLOWSHIP. AN EXHIBITION JUST OPENED AT THE INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART PHILADELPHIA AND WILL BE ON VIEW UNTIL MARCH 31. ♪>>MICHAEL HALSBAND IS A PHOTOGRAPHER AND FILMMAKER, BORN AND RAISED IN NEW YORK CITY. WHILE AN UNDERGRADUATE, HE BEGAN TAKING PORTRAITS FOR MAGAZINES. DURING HIS CAREER, HE TOURED WITH THE ROLLING STONES AND PHOTOGRAPHED MANY NOTABLE CELEBRITIES. MOST FAMOUSLY THE STAGED BOXING MATCH BETWEEN ANDY WARHOL AND JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT. IT SEEMED YOU WERE ONE OF THESE NEW YORK HITS WHO WAS — AT AN EARLY AGE, AT THE FACTORY OR GETTING TO KNOW A LOT OF FAMOUS PEOPLE. IS THAT PRETTY MUCH THE STORY OR DID IT HAPPEN THROUGH THE PHOTOGRAPHY PORTRAITURE?>>MY MEMORY GOES TO WHEN I WAS IN BOARDING SCHOOL AT 14 AND I WAS IN SCHOOL WITH A COUPLE OF CLASSMATES WHOSE PARENTS WERE JERRY WEXLER AND TOM DOWD, WHO WERE PRODUCERS WITH ATLANTIC RECORDS. WE WENT TO THE CITY AND WENT TO ATLANTIC RECORDS AND TO ME, THAT WAS AN INCREDIBLE OPPORTUNITY TO SEE A RECORDING STUDIO. THEY WERE SUPER WARM AND FRIENDLY TO ME AND INVITED ME TO COME ANYTIME I WANTED. I WAS MUCH MORE EXCITED THAN THEIR CHILDREN WERE. I TOOK THEM UP ON IT ON — IN A SERIOUS WAY. WHEN I LEFT THAT BOARDING SCHOOL AND CAME BACK TO THE CITY, I WAS OBSESSED WITH MUSIC AND PHOTOGRAPHY, KIND OF GETTING AROUND ON DIFFERENT LEVELS OF SCHOOL AND SOCIALLY OUT IN CENTRAL PARK AND DANCES. I WAS IN A BAND.>>IT SEEMED LIKE A PERIOD, WHEN EVERYONE WAS OUTSIDE OF THEIR APARTMENTS, OUT ON THE SCENE AND IT WAS A SMALL TOWN IN A WAY.>>I HAD NO IDEA WHAT I WAS GOING TO DO AND I TOOK THESE LOW-LEVEL JOBS TO MAKE A LITTLE MONEY.>>YOU WERE ALREADY SETTING UP A PORTRAIT STUDIO, RIGHT?>>YEAH.>>YOU WERE MEETING A LOT OF INTERESTING PEOPLE.>>YEAH, THAT WAS A DREAM I HAD ONCE I GOT INTO THE SCHOOL AND DISCOVERED THE STUDIO AND IDEA OF STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY. I WASN’T LOOKING FOR ANYTHING, I WAS JUST THINKING ABOUT IT AND ONE DAY — I WAS ALWAYS WALKING UP BROADWAY TO THE PHOTO STORES IN HERALD SQUARE. I PASSED A BUILDING I WAS ALWAYS LOOKING AT THINKING THAT IS SO BEAUTIFUL, THIS CAST-IRON BUILDING. IT WAS DILAPIDATED, BUT BEAUTIFUL. ONE DAY THERE WAS A SIGN ON IT, LOFTS FOR SALE. I WALKED IN. HE SHOWED ME THIS ONE I BOUGHT AND SAID IT WAS $45,000, BUT I DID NOT NEED TO HAVE ALL THAT MONEY AT ONCE. I ONLY NEEDED LIKE 20%, 30% AND I COULD GET A MORTGAGE. I SAID, HOW DOES THAT WORK? WHAT IS A MORTGAGE? I STARTED FROM SCRATCH. I HAD THE MONEY, I HAD BEEN WORKING WHILE I WAS IN ART SCHOOL.>>THAT IS THE PLACE YOU STILL LIVE.>>IT IS 40 YEARS THIS MONTH.>>I KNOW YOU PHOTOGRAPHED WARHOL AND SOME OF OTHER PEOPLE.>>MICK JAGGER, JIM CARROLL, PETER TOSH.>>THESE PEOPLE CAME TO YOU BECAUSE ROLLING STONES OR SOMETHING NEEDED A PORTRAIT.>>IN THE BEGINNING, I WENT TO EVERY MAGAZINE. THE FIRST MAGAZINE I STARTED WORKING FOR WAS ART NEWS AND THEN I GOT THESE ASSIGNMENTS TO PHOTOGRAPH WARHOL AND ANDY INVITED ME TO WORK WITH INTERVIEWS. THAT WAS A BIG BREAK BECAUSE IT BROUGHT ME INTO A BIGGER WORLD AND MORE EXPOSURE, BUT ALSO A BIGGER COMMUNITY.>>YOU ENDED UP PALLING AROUND WITH BASQUIAT IN PARIS, RIGHT? I REMEMBER SOMETHING FROM THE PARIS TALK THAT HE FOUND PARIS QUITE RACIST. I THINK BACK OF ALL THE AMERICANS WHO FLED NEW YORK OR THE U.S. TO GO TO PARIS SO THEY COULD BE TREATED NORMALLY.>>I THINK JEAN-MICHEL REALLY LIKED PARIS. HE HAD BEEN THROUGH A LOT WHEN IT CAME TO THAT TREATMENT AND IT WAS INTERESTING TO SEE HOW HE HANDLED PEOPLE PUT OFF BY HIM OR NOT SURE HOW TO HANDLE HIM. HE HAD HIS HAIR STICKING UP AND HE WAS DRESSING IN A LOT OF — I THOUGHT THEY WERE COOL CLOTHES, BUT MAYBE THE COMBINATION OF EVERYTHING WAS MUCH FOR PEOPLE. LIKE A LOT OF THINGS THAT HAPPENED TO US WERE SO ALIEN TO ME AND IMMEDIATELY UPSETTING, I HAD NO THRESHOLD FOR THAT.>>HE WAS SORT OF A TARGET FOR BAD ATTENTION?>>HE WAS MUCH MORE FAMILIAR AND MUCH MORE COMFORTABLE.>>KNEW HOW TO BE SELF-PROTECTIVE AS A BLACK GUY IN THE WORLD.>>HE WAS ALL AROUND WILLING TO SURRENDER TO THINGS, TO DANGEROUS SITUATIONS MUCH MORE THAN I WAS COMFORTABLE WITH AND I WAS ALSO LIKE, I AM NOT DOING THAT OR I AM NOT DOING THIS. I THINK HE LIVED HIS LIFE IN A VULNERABLE WAY, A VERY WIDE OPEN, DANGEROUS WAY.>>HOW DID THE WARHOL-BASQUIAT PHOTO SHOOT COME ABOUT?>>THAT’S A GOOD QUESTION. I HAD MET JEAN-MICHEL AT A PHOTO SHOOT FOR — OF ALL THESE ARTISTS HE ASSEMBLED FOR A DINNER AND JEAN-MICHEL WAS IN THAT GROUP. I TRIED TO TALK TO HIM THAT NIGHT, BUT HE WASN’T REALLY RECEPTIVE. I LEFT THINKING THAT WAS THAT. A COUPLE OF MONTHS LATER, I GOT A CALL FROM — WHO ASKED ME TO COME TO A DINNER. ANDY WAS HAVING A PRIVATE DINNER. IT WASN’T UNUSUAL AND I DID NOT THINK ANYTHING MUCH OF IT. I ARRIVED A LITTLE BIT LATE AND THERE WAS ONLY ONE SEAT LEFT RIGHT NEXT TO JEAN-MICHEL. I SAT DOWN AND HE TURNED TO ME. I WAS SORT OF LIKE, THIS IS GOING TO BE DIFFICULT TO SIT NEXT TO THIS PERSON. HE TURNED TO ME AND SAID I HAVE BEEN A BIG FAN OF YOUR WORK FOR FIVE YEARS. HE SAID THE PORTRAIT YOU MADE OF KLAUS NOMI, IS THE FIRST WORK I HAD SEEN OF YOURS AND I REALLY LOVED IT. SINCE THEN, I LIKED A LOT OF WORK YOU HAVE DONE. HE SAID I WOULD LIKE TO TALK TO YOU FOR THIS EXHIBITION HE WAS HAVING WITH ANDY. HE SAID, WOULD YOU BE INTERESTED MAKING THAT PICTURE. I SAID, I WOULD LOVE TO DO THAT. IN MY MIND I THOUGHT, THAT IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. WE WALKED OUTSIDE OF THE BATHROOM AND JEAN-MICHEL SAID TO ANDY MICHAEL IS GOING TO DO THAT PICTURE OF US FOR THE BOXING POSTER. HE SAID, BUT WE ASKED ROBERT TO DO IT. THERE WE GO, IT DID NOT EVEN LAST 30 SECONDS. JEAN-MICHEL SAID MICHAEL IS GOING TO DO IT. ANDY SAID I LOVE MICHAEL’S PORTRAITS, IT WILL BE GREAT.>>HOW SOON DID IT HAPPEN?>>A WEEK.>>HOW LONG WAS THE SESSION?>>ABOUT AN HOUR.>>I HEARD ANDY DID NOT LIKE TO BE TOUCHED.>>I NEVER GOT ANY INDICATION HE WANTED TO BE TOUCHED. HE ALWAYS SEEMED STIFF AND RIGID. HE WAS ALWAYS WARM AND FRIENDLY, BUT WITHIN THIS BODY THAT WAS NOT WARM AND FRIENDLY.>>DID YOU HAVE TO WORK TO LOOSEN HIM UP?>>JEAN DID MOST OF THAT. HE TOUCHED HIM IN WAYS AND I WAS LIKE, HE IS SUPER COMFORTABLE WITH HIM. THERE WAS NO BARRIER HE WOULD NOT BREAK. IT WAS BEAUTIFUL TO SEE THAT.>>YOU WERE ON THE SCENE WHEN THERE WERE A LOT OF INTERESTING GAY MEN AND A LOT OF TALENT THAT GOT WIPED OUT, UNFORTUNATELY BY THE AIDS CRISIS.>>THE KLAUS NOMI CIRCLE OF PEOPLE — I MET KLAUS THROUGH JOEY AND MY GIRLFRIEND, AT THE TIME WAS A TEXTILE DESIGNER. SHE WAS ALWAYS GOING TO — AND JOEY WAS WORKING THERE. I BECAME FRIENDLY WITH HIM AND ALL OF THEIR CIRCLE OF FRIENDS.>>THAT IS A TIME WHEN STREET CULTURE, STREET FASHION WAS SO INFLUENTIAL ON LIKE MASS-MARKET RETAIL AND THINGS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY.>>THE PICTURES I WAS MAKING OF KLAUS NOMI AND OF HIS CIRCLE WAS MY SENIOR THESIS IN ART SCHOOL. IT WAS SUCH A PERFECT COLLABORATION. IT WAS EXACTLY THE SUBJECT MATTER I WAS LOOKING FOR AND WHAT IT GAVE BACK TO ME IN TERMS OF ALL THIS RICHNESS OF VISION, KNOWLEDGE, APPRECIATION OF THINGS.>>YOU HAVE A PRETTY METHODICAL STYLE. YOU HAVE A WHITE BACKGROUND AND SOMETIMES DARK BACKGROUND. IT IS VERY ANTHROPOLOGICAL, FEAR, LET DOWN THE MASK. HAS THAT CHANGED OVER TIME?>>MY WHOLE LIFE CHANGED AT THE END OF MY 40s WITH DISCOVERING YOGA OR WANTING TO FIND A YOGA PRACTICE AND FINDING ONE AND EVERYTHING FIT INTO PLACE. WITH YOGA, THAT LED ME TO WANT TO FEEL BETTER. IT WAS MAKING ME FEEL REALLY GREAT TO BEGIN WITH. WHAT ELSE IS THERE? DIET AND LEARNING ABOUT FOOD AND ALL THE THINGS I DID NOT EVER REALLY KNOW ABOUT. IT’S ALSO TAKING YOU OFF THE TRACK OF BEING MORE MINDFUL OF WHAT YOUR BODY NEEDS, WHAT YOU NEED TO BE HEALTHY AND KEEP YOUR MIND HEALTHY. ALL OF THAT IS CONNECTED AND TO HAVE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN MORE ABOUT FARMING, SOMETIMES THESE PROJECTS ENABLE ME TO OBSESS DEEPLY, AS YOU CAN APPRECIATE INTO A SUBJECT MATTER THAT I HAVE A MASSIVE AMOUNT OF CURIOSITY ABOUT OR PASSION FOR. PHOTOGRAPHY AND FILMMAKING HAVE BEEN GREAT FOR ME TO BE ABLE TO EXPLORE WORLDS I WAS ATTRACTED TO. I MET A YOUNG SURFER WHO WAS A BIT OF A LEGEND HIMSELF AND I HAD ALWAYS BEEN IN AGREEMENT WITH HIS PHILOSOPHY. WE WERE INTRODUCED BY A MUTUAL FRIEND AND HE APPROACHED ME ABOUT WORKING ON A PROJECT TOGETHER. SURFING WAS ONE OF THE FEW THINGS I THOUGHT WAS SACRED TO ME AND I WAS NOT GOING TO MIX PHOTOGRAPHY WITH IT. WHEN HE APPROACHED ME, I WAS INSTANTLY, LET’S GO, LET’S DO IT. IT WAS AN INCREDIBLE EXPERIENCE, PROBABLY THE BIGGEST PROJECT I HAVE BEEN ABLE TO CONTEXTUALIZE INTO A BOOK SO FAR.>>THAT FILM GOT QUITE A LOT OF PLAY.>>MADE THIS SURF MOVIE. I HAD NOT SET OUT TO MAKE A MOVIE AND WHENEVER ANYBODY WENT OUT SURFING, I MADE 14 ROLLS OF FILM AND IT BECAME A MOVIE.>>IT SEEMS LIKE REBEL CULTURE IS IN IT IN SOME WAYS.>>I AM A PRODUCT OF AMERICAN POP CULTURE. ALL THESE THINGS ARE VERY EXCITING. I ALWAYS WANTED TO RUN AWAY WITH THE CIRCUS AND DO THESE THINGS THAT ARE KIND OF EDGY, WEIRD. IF I COULD NOT DO THAT, WHAT ELSE IS THERE? I DREAMED OF TOURING WITH THE ROLLING STONES WHEN I WAS 12 YEARS OLD AND GOT THE FIRST STONES RECORD. I THOUGHT, WHAT WOULD IT BE LIKE TO TRAVEL WITH THESE PEOPLE AND THIS DREAM BECOMES TRUE AT AGE 25. 13 YEARS LATER. IT’S FUNNY LIKE THOSE THINGS MAYBE YOU DON’T EVEN THINK ABOUT AS DREAMS OR ASPIRATIONS OR SOMETHING THAT ALL THE PIECES START FALLING INTO PLACE AND YOU ARE JUST WORKING TOWARD MAKING IT HAPPEN WHETHER YOU REALIZE IT OR NOT. ♪>>MICHAEL HALSBAND, ICONIC PORTRAITS OF ANDY WARHOL AND JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT ARE CURRENTLY ON VIEW AT THE PENINSULA IN NEW YORK. TO EXHIBITION IS PART OF A SERIES HONORING THE BEST ARTISTS OF THE 1980s. ♪ [THEME MUSIC] ♪

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