Monday, September 24, 2012

AirCraft: The Jet as Art

Where: National Air and Space Museum

When: through November 25, 2012

Jeffrey Milstein, a photographer, stands at the end of airport runways and photographs planes from below as they are landing, at speeds of up to 175 miles per hour.  A hair-raising way to create art, but the results can't be disputed.  Although I view airplanes more as modes of transportation than as objects for artistic creation, these images are lovely, and the photography is stunning.  Plus, I learned something new, which makes up for my having to go to the Air and Space Museum.  A photographic typology is a collection of images on the same topic.  Apparently, the first ones were of industrial architecture, but the subjects have expanded in the years since this began.  Milstein gives us a photograph typology of airplanes, including one that I identified (correctly) as a Southwest Airlines jet (remember, you're looking at these from the bottom, so the identifying insignia is not visible) and one that seemed to have the flag of Maryland on it.  I saw another image of this plane, which was identified as Maryland One, so I was right about that as well.  Is this the governor's plane?  I'm guessing that's the case; I never thought about the governor of Maryland needing a plane before...  The comment next to the typology compares these images to pinned butterflies, and that's a good analogy.  Showing them all together makes it easier to compare and contrast one's "specimens."

Verdict: A nice small show - easily managed in a lunch hour, even with the inevitable crowds at Air and Space.

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