Snore: More Flickr Photos for Shore to Ignore

Alec reposted the 2point8 thrash from last year where Stephen Shore had a hissy about all the bad photographs on flickr. To recap, Shore’s position is that good photography can’t exist in the same place as bad photography of kittens and rainbows. I suppose we’re expected to believe that everything that came out of The Factory was revolutionary. It’s a shame to see Shore flailing on the upper end of the “art vs. the masses” see-saw, but so be it, there’s a lot of digital fear from the old guard, even from those who use Macs.

One would hope a pioneer like Shore might be more visionary about the future (isn’t calling eBay merch photographs “art” so 1998?), but where would the art world be if it weren’t exclusionary? Gatekeeping’s an expensive business, and absolutism is one way to safeguard your share, I guess.

Of the less than 1% of photographers on flickr who consistently post good work (in both singles and sets), there are people who make photographs that break-down, crumple-up and wipe the floor with most of the photography I’ve seen in Chelsea (and elsewhere), the only difference is that I can only see it on a screen, through a site owned by Yahoo. I would not have known about these folks had it not been for flickr, and I’ve met quite a few of them in my travels here and abroad.

As a whole, they enrich, surprise and challenge me in a way that rivals my stack of photobooks, and I loves me stacks of books. Here are a few singles from friends, favorites and mysteries alike:

Eliot Shepard

Eddie G

Hin Chua

Ben Roberts

Stephen McLaren

Too bad Horatiu Sava just pulled all his pics… More Shore on 2point8. I’m a huge fan.

10 thoughts on “Snore: More Flickr Photos for Shore to Ignore”

  1. Great stuff. I’ve followed Hin’s work for several years but most of the others are new to me. Ah crap, more time looking at excellent photography. Yeah, flickr is such a downer.

  2. Interesting to see this reaction to the reactions etc.

    As a gift to the readers the picture Alec Soth used to start his blog on this flickr issue



  3. Not that I’m taking sides…I don’t own any books by Shore. But Flickr gives me a huge migraine every time I look at it. Somewhere today on this site I read a great comment about the “weightlessness” of digital. Does anyone read Harper’s? One of the entries in this month’s Index: Weight, in ounces, of all the information that passed through the Internet last year: 0.00004

  4. There are two follow-ups to this on the Soth blog:

    While the title of this entry may not be the best, and it’s not the kindest post I’ve made, I don’t feel the need (yet) to reclarify or delete. I think that the discussion(s) have value above and beyond the fact that I could/should have done a much better job transcribing the full-quote, rather than just pasting in the flammable bit.

    If anything, the hubub inspired me to post the above 8 pictures, and I’m glad they’re here.

  5. Me too. Thank you Michael, for elegantly speaking up for Flickr photographers, (and in the process showing me a couple more photographers I hadn’t yet fully explored).

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