Lutz Dille, photographer of life

Lutz Dille's artwork

While out walking in the west end of Toronto last month, Heather and I happened upon this larger-than-life example of photographer Lutz Dille’s excellent work. We paused and posed. I was suddenly inside the frame along with the subjects. And like them I was looking at art, not at slides in my hand but at the street life around me and at my girlfriend who held the camera. It’s complicated.

We saw this photo while riding the streetcar past the storefront window at the Stephen Bulger’s art gallery on Queen Street West. Held in his gaze, as it were, I felt like a pint-sized fairie on this nameless woman’s shoulder as she viewed images on a slide–an archaic technology requiring eyes, light, imagination, human joints and flexible digits. There is magic in the works. The sobering depth and scintillating poetry of an artist as he spirals through time.

Quite possibly Dille shot the photographs the couple are viewing on the slides. He then shot them looking at the slides. Fifty years later, Heather has digitally shot this photograph, sort of adding me to the original. And now I’m displaying it for you on a computer screen.

Lutz Dille was a German-Canadian photographer. He died a couple of years back and I wrote his obituary. The story I wrote then is much more interesting than a story I could flash up here now, so I’ll attach the published piece and encourage you to read it. Also, here’s a link to more of his photographs.

Enjoy the words. Enjoy the pictures.

DILLE Lutz G&M Aug 1 08


About Nor

I'm a creative non-fiction writer, with a special interest in memoirs and obituaries--life stories, local histories with flesh & blood anecdotal details. I'm also beginning to create podcasts of people's stories and expanding their audiences. I'm a diarist, an editor, and a political activist. I live in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and spend days tapping keys or staining my fingers in ink.
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