Twist and Shout

Twist and Shout
Life is never straight (Joey Kulkin photo)

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Vignettes from Vermont: Lodiza

"Trash Made Flesh" (Incredible Kulk photo)

BENNINGTON -- The scene above represents repression, suffocation and transmogrification of the American Dream. Or maybe it represents child abuse. Or, and this is what it is, it's just a baby doll that some snot-nosed kid forgot on the cracked sidewalk in Section 8 Bennington on August 8, 2012, which a photographer then stumbled upon during his 4 o'clock walk and thought "Sweet photo."

"Amsterdam" (Joel Lentzner photo)

The scene above represents Anne Frank's sexual awakening in post-war Europe. Or maybe it represents the way females bond at a certain age. Or, and this is what it is, it's two silver foxes gazing through the window of a porn shop in Amsterdam.


This is Lodiza LePore, a photographer being photographed at Fiddlehead at Four Corners today after dropping off new work, wishing no doubt that a thousand bolts of lightning would strike Art Gallery Dude dead to stop this ghastly charade ...

"Fire!" (Art Gallery Dude photo)

There are two photographic Lodiza LePores.

In many ways Lodiza LePore the commercial film photographer is like the photographers from up above in that she sees everyday life and photographs it. Except Lodiza is old-school photography and prints her photos in the darkroom and uses diffusion filters and fabrics and other unique techniques to give black-and-white or sepia shots their cool, ghostly glows. The ghost effect caught Tanya Lam's attention one day a few weeks ago ...

Tanya Lam sings for Vulpes Vulpes. Read about it HERE

... and the Brooklynite bought the shot of kids cliff-jumping into the Dorset Quarry. The shot could be from last year but the filtering also makes it look like the summer of '55. That's the power of Lodiza LePore's mojo in the darkroom.

LePore's other popular photos at Fiddlehead feature the Bennington Monument, the Bennington Catamount, Vermont farm animals, the Old First Church and the ghoulish Walloomsac Inn across the street in Old Bennington. 

Whether they're framed, matted or just glued onto 4x6 greeting cards, these are some of images Fiddlehead customers have come to love over the years ...

Vermont dairy

Lamb butts

The old Walloomsac Inn: biggest conversation piece at Fiddlehead

Dorset Quarry (left), Walloomsac Inn above Cape Porpoise

Here are some of the new shots Lodiza brought to Fiddlehead today ...

Bennington Monument and Bennington Catamount

Different perspective of the monument

Park-McCullough House wrap-around porch

Putnam building in downtown Bennington

North Bennington Railroad Station

What makes that first Bennington Monument photo so freakin' cool is that anyone who knows Monument Avenue knows that the catamount is a good thousand feet away. Lodiza used the right lens and contorted her camera and body in such a way to make it look like the catamount is right in front of the monument.

Unless ... well, you figure it out.


Then there's the other photographer named Lodiza LePore ...

... who has a big, big problem with the human condition and silently rages back by using her camera and props to make "political and cultural statements" against the forces of drugs, evil, corruption, power and greed. This is how she characterized the darker side of her ambition in an upcoming issue of B&W Magazine:

"Through this work my aim is to deconstruct the American 'fog' & other fairy tales by exposing a critical view of the actual state of things, to reveal the true nature of human life stripped of pretenses that hide authentic feelings of loneliness, isolation & insecurity."

This Lodiza LePore will be on display in June at the Bennington Museum in an exhibit called "Circus on Broken Boulevard" -- which she showed a few years ago in North Adams.

This is the Lodiza LePore that any real fan of photography should check out. "Circus" features porcelain figurines and Alice's white rabbit to deliver a thousand-word slap again and again.

In the B&W article LePore said "All of the scenes come from my own observations and how I see life, and for me the images are an allegory about fascism and the origins of evil and how child abuse leads to fascism. 

"I have tried to analyze the nature of evil and man's destructive nature, the repression, malice, cruelty and misplaced anger that are the source of so much abuse."

For more LePore's click HERE
For a previous story about "Circus" click HERE

34 of the 35 pieces below will appear in "Circus on Broken Boulevard" ...