05-11-14 6:43 PM
What a profound demonstration of conceptual art!
The Vietnam War Memorial in person is more moving than you would expect. It is a brilliant architectural expression by Maya Lin. Unlike so much modern art it has meanings on multiple levels that are accessible to everybody. How amazing that something so somber reaches out and grabs you 40 years after the war. The wall is not art-on-a-pedestal, but an interactive event replayed with each veteran or tourist who experiences it.
I have to admit that this photo is somewhere between iconic and kitsch, but in this "found moment", what else can it be? These older veterans have obviously looked for and found a fallen comrade; it works nicely in B&W. In my other photo, the black wall of fallen names reflects the living passers-by, and therefore color works better.
When I was 16 the draft started taking all 18 year old american men, so I was perhaps the last age group in the US who was personally affected (psychically, not physically) by the Vietnam War.