An Opening To Recollections and Remembrances
I had the chance to attend the opening event of Joe McNally’s Faces of Ground Zero – 10 Years Later exhibit at the Time Warner Center yesterday. Here are just a few quick snaps from the event.
I was really struck by the Polaroids. The looks on the faces…there’s a phrased called the 1,000 Yard Stare…every one of the faces in these images seemed to have it. Joe captured it with these images. The people were exhausted, hurt, angry, sad….but they all knew the job wasn’t over, be it clearing out Ground Zero to look for bodies or to try to regain their lives.
It was also really nice to meet some of the people in the photos and shake their hands like Louie Cacchioli, who’s the unofficial “face” of the Faces of Ground Zero (that’s him all on all the banners and book covers). He’s retired now, living in Marlboro, New Jersey, but still very active with FDNY survivors. I also spoke with John Jonas, who was Captain of Ladder 6 (that’s him in the third photo above) and Keith Johnson from Ladder 6 in Chinatown.
I also had the chance to speak with Juana Lomi, a paramedic. I had just looked at her photo from 2001, and seen the image that Joe had just recently shoot when Joe introduced me to her. Ten years later, she’s still putting on the uniform with 9103 on the chest, hitting the streets, saving people. 9/11 is a touch point in her career….but she’s going out and getting it done every day.
It was also great to see Joe again. While we chat a lot, either email or the phone, we haven’t seen each other since I took his lighting class at Dobbs Ferry. . Joe never changes though – the same good, solid, humble guy that I’ve always known. I texted him on Tuesday evening, around 9 p.m. saying Are you locked and loaded and ready to go for the opening? Almost immediately he replied: We will be. 25 FDNY guys helping us set up all night! Him and the guys, just getting it done.
Also nice to again see Joe’s crack staff too…Lynn DelMastro, the glue of the McNally studio; top assistants and shooters Drew Gurian and Mike Cali; Ellen Price, the curator of the FGZ exhibit; Adorama’s Jeff Snyder, whom I first met at that Dobbs Ferry workshop.
So, it was a fun morning, but a sobering one as well. Getting taken back to those days right after 9/11….seeing the life-size images. Yeah, the edges of the prints have yellowed a little after 10 years, but what Polaroid doesn’t? They still look great, and are a testament to the people they portray.
I can’t say it enough – if you’re in NYC between now and September 12, head over the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle and check it out.
Here’s a video Joe and his team put together. You can find others on Joe’s YouTube Channel.
© Mark V. Krajnak 2011 | JerseyStyle Photography | All rights Reserved
Unless otherwise noted, images captured with a Canon 50D, SanDisk digital film, finished with PS4 or PSE6 and Nik Software.