29 October 2010
Downtown From Behind
Downtown From Behind is a documentary/multimedia project from New York. Summed up nicely on their website:
Every street below 14th film and photographed from behind, of you riding your bike.
Here's a funky little film about the making of. What a cool project!
It reminds us of the original concept here at Cycle Chic, way back in the day. We were inspired to take shots on our regular journeys through the city, shooting what was in front of us - which was invariably other cyclists.
Besides the aesthetic value of the shots from behind, we were inspired by two specific artistic angles:
One is 'Rückenfigur' - German for 'back figure'. It's a concept often related to romantic painters such as Caspar David Friedrich and aims to make visible what the person featured is looking at. We were further inspired by the Flickr group of the same name.
The other one originates with the Chinese poet Zhu Ziqing and his poem 'Seeing Father From The Back' from 1925. There is a term in Chinese called 'Backsight', meaning basically the same thing as 'rückenfigur'. 背影 - in Chinese.
There is also a cool Flickr group for this.