Review: "Short Stories" is About Creating Meaning Between Us

On my mother's bookshelves are two sets of photo albums: her family's and my father's. My mother's photos are labeled and marked sometimes front back and on the pages themselves. Little of our past is left to chance. We know who we were, where, when, how, and why. Over the years the note-makers have fixed our story so that it has become a set of roots. My father's albums are full of unnamed strangers whose foreheads, eyes, chins, and the like remind us of our own in the right light at the right time of day, but that's about it--and, really, it isn't much at all. They are our people and they are nobody. Somehow they arrived on a boat in Jersey City from Scandinavia a long time ago. These are the branches that reach through the dark night air, unnamed and unknown.

Thus, I have always understood my family as everybody and everybody else; the general and the particular speak to each other in ways that invite the imagination to push open doors in search of meaning.

So it was when I visited the Marie Louise Trichet Art Gallery at Wisdom House in Litchfield, Connecticut, that I knew and even was one of the strangers in the black and white and sepia photos--some portraits, others candids, and many others taken in photo booths a long time ago--that figure significantly in the mixed-media exhibition of Romanian-born artist Florin Firimita in his mixed-media exhibition entitled "Short Stories."

"Short Stories" mixes past and present and the here of this and the dream worlds in moments of awareness that invite the viewer in to connect with the images. They are poignant explorations of identity. One looks into a mind that cannot remember; another looks at a woman whose dreams are curtailed by political circumstances; yet another looks at immigration--disconnection and the adventure of reconnection.

Commenting on his use of anonymous photos, Firimita said before his January 27 opening at Wisdom House, "for better or worse, they become the subject of art." It's a beautiful marriage and a challenging one that invites you to be a part of the experience.

More on Firimita:


  1. I could get lost in your blogs you have so many, and all so clever and meaningful. I feel quiet useless trying to comment them.

    But you touched my heart, and gave my blog it's first praise.

    So somewhere, somehow I have to thank you.

  2. Thanks for taking the time to write. You've touched my heart, too. Thank God for the blogosphere, on many days a wellspring of kindness!


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