Paul Keegan

The quiet brilliance of street photographer Saul Leiter

This is the second exhibition of mid-century New York street photography at the MK Gallery in Milton Keynes. The first, in 2022, surveyed the work of Vivian Maier, who at her death left behind a vast quantity of prints and negatives: evidence of a hidden life unsuspected even by those in whose household she lived

The pleasures of reading aloud

pkkkfffffffrrrffff-ffff! pkkkfffffffrrrffff-fff! Hobble leg, hobble leg, Hobble leg owhmmm! Into the bottle of fluff, rubbed the stuff under! pkkkfffffffrrrffff-ffff! pkkkfffffffrrrffff-fff! This is the voice of Tennyson reading ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’, as recorded by Thomas Edison in 1890 and phonetically or farcically transcribed in a novel by Nicholson Baker over a century later.

Snow on snow

Here is William Diaper in 1722, translating Oppian’s Halieuticks (a Greek epic poem on the loves of the fishes): As when soft Snows, brought down by Western Gales, Silent descend and spread on all the Vales . . . Nature bears all one Face, looks coldly bright, And mourns her lost Variety in White. Unlike

Seeing red | 18 August 2016

Early on in his excellent and protean biography of a colour, Spike Bucklow quotes Goethe, writing in 1809: Every rope in the English Navy has a red thread running through it, which cannot be extracted without unravelling the whole, so that even the smallest length of rope can be recognised as belonging to the crown.

Roaming in the gloaming

One of the epigraphs to Peter Davidson’s nocturne on Europe’s arts of twilight is from Hegel: ‘The owl of Minerva begins to fly only at dusk’, an image of philosophy as posthumous, able to explain things only after we have experienced them. Or an image of dusk as threshold, the blue hour when light transforms