Hello, October. Please be awesome.

"Takanawa Sengakuji Temple," Tsuchiya Koitsu (1870-1949) - 1933


Eight black men. Eight deaths at the hands of police. Photographer Kris Graves visits Ferguson, Staten Island, Baton Rouge, and other cities in search of insight and understanding.
The Queens-based photographer Kris Graves has spent the past three years photographing black men and women from all manner of backgrounds as they would want themselves to be pictured, in lighting and poses of their choosing, a series of portraits collected under the title The Testament Project. Here, over the course of eight days, he has traveled across the country in search of eight black, male subjects who will never sit in his studio—he has set out to document the physical spaces where, one by one, their lives ended.
The killings this September of Terence Crutcher in Tulsa, and of Keith Scott in Charlotte, have again freshened this trauma, which barely ever subsides. It is terrifying to discover over and over just how easy it is for someone’s loved one to be laughing one moment and, in the next one, lying prone on the asphalt, blood pooling at the feet of uniformed men and women who will not administer first aid to stop it. A unique human life is reduced to the circumstances and history of a demography and geography...

The Triple S Mart is a popular store with cars in and out of the parking lot. It had just rained and they have the memorial covered with a tarp. Some people driving through town stop and say they had never noticed the memorial before. Two people approach from across the street and ask to introduce the artist of the mural. They say they are interested in museum and gallery exhibitions and grant funding for their projects. The truth is, these places are not always as dangerous as they seem. (Watch: Alton Sterling police shooting videos)

Eric Garner died a 10-minute walk from the ferry terminal. In the park across the street, men gamble at a game called “quarters.” Outside of the Bay Beauty Supply, there is a small Plexiglas memorial with flowers in it. The man selling incense and oils outside of the store says he made the memorial. He says he had been on that street hustling, like Garner, for more than 30 years. He says he knew Eric and saw him in the neighborhood the day before he died. (Watch: Original Eric Garner fatal arrest video)

Walter Scott was killed in an empty field in an unremarkable suburb north of Charleston. It is nerve-racking to walk into that field, because it is difficult to tell if it is private or public property. It feels terrible to walk in the same line of fire as Scott did in order to make the photographs. The photo shoot was not a long one. (Watch: Walter Scott Death: Video Shows Fatal North Charleston Police Shooting)

Source: Vanity Fair, Thomas Chatterton Williams, Photos by Kris Graves, Sept. 29, 2016.
Click here to read the full article

Red leaves, monk and cat at Ankokuji temple in Tanto (via Instagram)

Telle la main droite
d'une sage-femme --
la feuille d'érable en automne

- Samboku Kikashu

How much damage did the debate
do to Donald Trump?

The reviews are in, and they are virtually unanimous: Donald Trump had a horrible debate on Monday night against Hillary Clinton. He was unprepared, unconvincing, and off-putting. On Wednesday, the op-ed page of the Wall Street Journal, hardly a redoubt of liberal sophistry, published a piece by Jason L. Riley, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, who wrote, “If Mr. Trump had a strategy for winning Monday night’s face-off with Mrs. Clinton, it remains as secret as his plan to defeat [the] Islamic State.”
During an appearance on CNN on Tuesday, Jeffrey Lord, a Trump surrogate, was reduced to making the argument that ordinary Americans may have seen things differently than the pundits did. That’s possible; but so far there isn’t any evidence to back it up, and there’s quite a bit of evidence to contradict it. Setting aside the online polls, which make no effort to make their samples random or representative, the survey evidence suggests that Trump suffered a resounding defeat.
A YouGov poll published on Tuesday found that fifty-seven per cent of the people who watched the debate thought that Clinton won, and thirty per cent thought that Trump won. (Thirteen per cent weren’t sure who the victor was.) In another poll, which Politico/Morning Consult carried out on Monday night and into Tuesday, the breakdown was forty-nine per cent to twenty-six per cent in Clinton’s favor.
That’s a huge margin, but what does it mean? Obviously, it doesn’t imply that the election is over. Much more goes into people’s voting decisions than how the candidates perform in a television face-off, and, in any case, there are two more of them to come. Trump might do better in the second and third debates, which are scheduled for Sunday, October 9th, and Wednesday, October 19th. This Wednesday, the Times published a story saying that Trump’s campaign advisers plan to drill him a lot more intensively before the next debate. And much else will happen in the almost six weeks left before voting day. In many other countries, six weeks is an entire campaign.
Still, what happened on Monday night shouldn’t be underestimated. America is a huge, heterogeneous country with relatively low levels of political participation. While journalists and people involved in politics obsess over every twist and turn of the campaign, most people don’t. They tune in here and there, particularly for set-piece events, such as the Conventions and the debates. Such casual engagement with politics might not be very healthy for democracy, but it’s a fact. That’s why normal Presidential campaigns put so much time and effort into preparing their candidates for the debates.
In the coming days, Clinton’s poll lead may well expand by more than two per cent, and perhaps by as much as four or five per cent. That’s partly because she was already on a slight upward trend in the days before the debate and also because she stands to benefit from all the positive coverage she has received in its aftermath. But the main reason is that Clinton did what she needed to do—rallying her base and appealing to independents. Trump didn’t meet his objectives—and further numbers suggest that’s putting it kindly.
One of Clinton’s challenges, going way back to the primaries, has been inspiring enthusiasm in progressive Democrats, particularly men, many of whom supported Bernie Sanders. But, after Monday’s debate, according to the Politico/Morning Consult poll, seventy four per cent of Democratic men said that they had a more favorable opinion of her after the debate. Fifty-two per cent said their opinion was “much more favorable.” That’s important. It suggests that, as the debates progress, Clinton could well take more votes from Johnson and Stein.
Clinton may also have picked up a bit of ground among independents, particularly independents who think of themselves as moderate rather than either liberal or conservative.

With Trump, those numbers were flipped: twenty-six per cent of moderate independents said that they had a more favorable opinion of him after the debate; thirty-nine per cent said they had a less favorable opinion. The figures for the entire sample were similar. Thirty per cent of respondents over all said that they had a more favorable opinion of Trump after the debate; thirty-seven per cent said they had a less favorable opinion.
That as many as three in ten Americans raised their opinion of Trump after watching his performance should give the pundit class pause. But that number will provide little solace to Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, and her colleagues. Trump has a large following, which responds enthusiastically to his bluster: nothing new there. But can he expand his support into a majority? Almost nothing about his performance on Monday night suggested that he can. Clinton, meanwhile, strengthened her lead.

Source: The New Yorker, John Cassidy, Sept. 28, 2016. Mr Cassidy has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1995. Read more...

Lloyd Wright’s Mayan-Deco Novarro House
hits the market asking $4.3M

Lloyd Wright’s Mayan-Deco Novarro House

The Novarro House, Lloyd Wright’s Mayan-inspired Art Deco masterpiece, is back on the market after last having sold in 2014. Silent film star Ramon Novarro commissioned the home in 1928 for his, erm, personal secretary, Louis Samuel. It fell back into Novarro's hands after he caught Samuel embezzling. Novarro then recruited art director (and Oscar statuette creator) Cedric Gibbons as an interior designer.

Lloyd Wright’s Mayan-Deco Novarro House

Since then, the home has hosted a number of luminaries, including musical theater icons Leonard Bernstein, Jerome Robbins, Betty Comden, and Adolph Green. Later, it was home to Diane Keaton (see article below), who restored it with the help of architect Josh Schweitzer.

Lloyd Wright’s Mayan-Deco Novarro House

Nestled into the hills of Los Feliz, the 2,690-square-foot house features copper ornamentation along the exterior—along with an impressive oversized street number out front facing the street. Other features include huge windows throughout, a frosted glass entryway, floor-to-ceiling glass doors in the master bedroom, and several balconies shaded by the lush array of surrounding vegetation. (LA Curbed, Sep. 27, 2016. Read more)

Lloyd Wright’s Mayan-Deco Novarro House

Inside Diane Keaton's 1920s Beverly Hills Residence

The actress and longtime friend and designer Stephen Shadley reemphasized the facade’s Spanish colonial style, giving it a simple—albeit monumental—wood door and metal grillwork at the windows.

Actress, director and producer Diane Keaton stands at the front entrance of her Beverly Hills residence, an early-1920s structure by architect Ralph Flewelling.

Keaton is an enthusiastic, knowledgeable collector of California art and design. A 1931 Maynard Dixon oil, Late Afternoon, hangs above the living room’s fireplace; William Ritschel’s 1912 Desert Wanderers is at rear. The pots are Hillside, from the teens and ’20s; the daybeds are Monterey pieces.

Original tiles pave the loggia. “I love contrast,” Keaton says. “I don’t want to be enclosed in darkness, nor do I want to be overwhelmed by too much light.”

An oil, Moonlight Mesa, from 1925, by Harold “Buck” Weaver is over the fireplace, which has the same form as the one in the living room.

Lanterns once used on the house’s exterior now illuminate the master bedroom.

But I know, yes I know, how to treat you right,
That's why you call me in the middle of the night.
You say it's urgent. So urgent, urgent...

Just wait and see
How urgent my love can be!

Donald Trump Threatens to Skip Remaining
Debates if Hillary is There

Trump blasted the format of Monday night’s debate by claiming that the presence of Clinton was “specifically designed” to distract him from delivering his message to the American people.
“Every time I said something, she would say something back,” he said. “It was rigged.”
(Andy Borowitz, Borowitz Report, The New Yorker)


Ralph Crane, Kentucky, 1952

Long Island, Sept. 1966, Ernest Sisto for The New York Times

Pennsylvania Station with a new counter in 1956, by Ernie Sisto

Fuji from Yoshida, Yamanashi (1958)

Sur cette route
il ne passe personne
crépuscule d'automne

-- Matsuo Bashō (松尾 芭蕉, 1644 – 1694)

Toc-toc, toc-toc
dans la brume approchant
qui cela peut-il bien être ?

-- Kobayashi Issa (小林 一茶, 1763 – 1828)

Old shop in Kawagoe 川越

京都, Kyoto
京都, Kyoto (via U3KJP on Flickr)

Old shop in Kawagoe 川越
Old shop in Kawagoe 川越


"A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips" - Tom Daley (via his Facebook page)

Xavier Serrano
Xavier Serrano