Things Once Seen has received the 2009 August Derleth Award for nonfiction book by the Council for Wisconsin Writers.
retrospective of photographs spans a period of forty years. Each
photograph, each act of photographing, has been an attempt to stop
time, to capture what is happening in the moment, and to preserve
the moment for posterity. The photographer frames the subject, and
seemingly gives witness to an order in the universe. But the photographer
knows that, as Henri Cartier-Bresson has reminded us, nothing can
really bring back the moment of things fixed in the photograph.
And nothing can bring back that moment in the life of the photographer.
In the wisdom of Buddhism, all things are impermanent.
these photographs of things once seen, are a reminder of the impermanence
of all things. But what the photographer once saw and caught on
film may be given another life when others see the photographs at
a later time. For the photographer, the act of photographing has
been an intimate part of the process of living a life. This body
of work, accompanied by journal notes, is a record of what the photographer
once saw, and is a window to the life once lived.
Richard Quinney is the author of several books that combine photography
with autobiographical writing, including Journey to a Far Place,
For the Time Being, Borderland, Once Again the Wonder, Where Yet
the Sweet Birds Sing, Of Time and Place, and Tales from the
Middle Border. His photographs are in the permanent collection
of the Wisconsin Historical Society. He and his wife live in Madison,
130 duotone photographs