Friday, 4 November 2011

Fosco Maraini (1912 - 2004)

Fosco Maraini was an Italian anthropologist

mountaineer, writer
and photographer.

Through his eyes we see
forgotten lives in Tibet, Japan, Italy
in the early twentieth century.

His photographs speak of curiosity
but also compassion and respect.

They are windows into lost worlds.


We should all remember that our photos
are windows into other worlds,
particularly domestic and family life,
and that by conscientious archiving
which we achieve by blogging
we are safeguarding precious memories.


  1. Crap, now I have lost my thoughts.
    I guess that I was saying "Ahmen" which is incorrect, but it says to me more than "Amen".
    You are such a delight and inspiration.

  2. Be sure to print some, too...and place in an album with good paper pages. Treasures. Like no other.

  3. You are so right, Alice!

  4. I don't take enough pictures of people just living- not good at it. I'd love to get better at that sort of photography.

  5. I often sit and think how important our cameras have become to us. Mine is in everyday use. Wishing that I could take a photograph as beautiful as that bottom one.............

  6. so true x thanks for the reminder x

  7. My sister's father-in-law died recently and she noted how tricky it was to find a photo of him because he was the photographer of the family. She suggested we ought to have an annual photograph day in case we need one for funerals/kidnapping scenarios.

    As one of my main reasons for blogging is to keep a family diary I have lots of photos of everyone else but not many of me. I'm thinking of doing a self-portrait and marking it "kidnap" photo!

  8. Savvy and beautiful.
    But we all knew that about you.

  9. True.... So many of my photos are truly terrible, but they do act as an archive, an illustrated account of my everyday life. Being dated, can be so useful too, for example when trying to tell a vet, without guessing wildly, how old your animal is!

    But for those of us whose blogs aren't properly archived, like yours, I wonder what will happen to them when we are gone? Perhaps like family photos, they lose their meaning when they reach a time when no one remembers who we were?

  10. Oops, I meant properly archived as yours is.....

    (I must confess to being quite envious of your blog's elevated status!)

  11. That's so true.
    Until I started reading blogs I never took photos of 'mundane' things. I had more photos of a holiday house than the house we actually lived in. Then I realised that it isn't right to think of things that way just because I see them every day. The little moments and everyday scenes are special too. It took better photographers than me to teach me that.
    I love that last photo!

  12. Oh but that the photos were a modicum of these!

  13. Well...for the sake of discussion: wouldn't you say that the photographs you used to illustrate this post are truly excellent photographs in every way? I love photography, and I enjoy the photography on many of the blogs I follow, this one certainly included! But I must respectfully say that I think it would be setting the bar quite high to expect photographs that will not only be technically excellent, but which will also document the present in a way that will speak clearly and well to future generations. If I thought my own photographs had such a heavy rsponsibility, it would take much of the fun out of photography for me. But maybe that is not what you mean, and I misunderstood? In any case, I do hope I haven't offended anyone! I enjoy bloggers' photographs very much, and many times it is the off-the-cuff, personal, quirky quality that I find most appealing.


Thank you! I love reading your comments and even though I don't always have time to reply I am really grateful to every one who joins in the conversation.