Tuesday, May 28

Good Stuff: Private Moon

   I've seen quite a few of these photos on tumblr and flickr but wasn't aware it was a series of photographs or that there was a story behind it. I found the artist's, Leonid Tishkov, website today along with the original photographs from the series and the poem. It's strangely beautiful and wanted to share.

    "Writer Chesterton once said that there couldn’t be a personal faith as there couldn’t be a personal sun or a personal moon. In Russia everything is the other way round: we are faced with life one to one, and we are completely lonely in the face of the problem of time, that is, the problem of life and death, the problem of losses and gains, the moon, the sun, and everything in this life. We could, conceivably, turn to someone for support. But we are still lonely…However, that shouldn’t make us grieve or suffer. Loneliness of this sort means that we exist, we are here, we are at the center of the universe and we are comparable to the Moon, to the other celestial bodies. 

    'Private Moon' is a visual poem telling the story of a man who met the Moon and stayed with her for the rest of his life. In the upper world, in fact in the attic of his own house, he saw the Moon falling off from the sky. Once she was hiding from the Sun in a dark and damp tunnel. But the passing trains frightened her. Now she came to this man’s house. Having wrapped the Moon with warm blankets he treated her with autumn apples, gave her a cup of tea, and when she got well he took her in his boat across the dark river to the high bank overgrown with moon pine-trees. He descended into the lower world dressed in the clothes of his deceased father and then returned from there lighting up his path with his personal Moon. Crossing the borderline between the two worlds across a narrow bridge, immersed in a dream and taking care of this heavenly creature, the man became a mythological being living in a real world as in a fairytale. 

    Each photograph is a poetic tale, a little poem in its own right. Therefore each picture is accompanied by my own verse, which I wrote when I drew my sketches for the photographs. So it turns out that the Moon overcomes our loneliness in the universe uniting many of us around it." 
-Leonid Tishkov, via

"Like Magritte’s
Day and Night
The moon was stuck in a pine tree’s crown
a needle adhered to its radient sleeve"

"The sky is near.
Open the attic and you’ll see
there next to the wasp nest
rings the blinding light"
of the lost moon

"Open the closet
there among the old coats, the moon
hides from people"

"Autumn is so chilly
even the moon has caught a cold"

I cross the dark river
to the high bank
where the lunar evergreens grow

"I grope about in the dark
carrying the heavenly light
on my back in a swarm of sparkling bees"

 "The Moscow Moon
 in a starless sky
 has sat down on the edge of a roof"

"I invite the moon to tea
like a lump of sugar
the damp night dissolves the moon in
an apple tree"

"After everyone has gone to bed
go to the window and there
the crescent moon has appeared to you"

"A bundle of light is the moon
on a sleigh. The sky
worries, when will he return?
Where have they taken him?"

"Like a lunar unicorn
Under the covers she
shines even brighter"

"The funeral of the moon-every morning
Come nightfall you discover the body of the newborn moon
and help return it to the sky
leaving a mere trace in the snow
a thawing light impression"

Leonid Tishkov 2003. Photographs by Leonid Tishkov & Boris Bendikov, 2002-2005

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