Mainzer Dom

Mainzer Dom

Construction started on the Dom in Mainz in 975 or 976. It was a center of power, being the seat of the Prince-Elector Archbishop of Mainz, one of seven members of the electoral college of the Holy Roman Empire who directly elected the King of the Romans, and later the Emperor.

This is what I find so fascinating about the Dom, its combination of temporal and ecclesiastical power that traverses the Dark Ages back to the Roman Empire.

Tympanum and Guitar

Tympanum and Guitar

North portal of the K├Âlner Dom.

I was noodling around the cathedral in Cologne and accidentally discovered that the portals make good frames for street photography. I don't have any interest in "mugging" people with a short lens in-your-face, Garry Winogrand style. But people make photos so much more dimensional. And when I saw the street musician approaching with his white guitar, white suit, white hat contrasting against the soot-covered cathedral door, the statues of saints looking down at him like "You're next" - I knew it was going to be a keeper.

It's not perfect. There's some motion blur in his walk, the verticals converge a little, and the scan doesn't do justice to the darkroom print. But this is what I'm trying to accomplish, trying to say, trying to show something that's 800 years old, and how many people have walked by these doors?

The Great War, 1914-1918

The Great War, 1914-1918

Memorial on the Neroberg in Wiesbaden, dedicated in 1931 to 15,680 soldiers and officers lost in the First World War.

Gears

Gears

Detail from one of the displays at the Deutsches Museum in Munich.