MR. CAPONIGRO: Then at 5:00, everybody would go home and they would lock the gates to them. But they would leave the power off until I finished my work. And that could be a few hours later. So they allowed me that time extra, without people. And then during the day, I just very carefully and patiently would see that, well, there's a photograph here. And I would get my camera set up and wait until a group of people were hidden behind the stones and get my exposure, and then they would continue. So a lot of jockeying at that time. But mostly, they allowed me to be there at hours when nobody else was.
MS. LARSEN: That was very generous of them.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Oh, it was wonderful. It was wonderful. And I brought back - when it was finished, I did a portfolio of twelve images of Stonehenge, twelve of what I thought were the best, and I wrote a piece about what I felt there, and I ceremoniously gave it to the head guard that used to take care of Stonehenge, Tom Woodhouse. And he said, "Well, you know, we've got this big fence up. But I think this wants to be brought into the center of the stone, so let's go. Just look for all the world as if you're an archeologist; behave as if you are, and we'll step over the fence," which we did. We went into there and laid it on the center stone, and then we walked it completely around the stones, offered it to Stonehenge, and left it in the guard house. And I said, "This is, you know, for you to share with anybody." He kept it for a year and said, "It's too good a piece to be just hanging around here. So I have donated it in your name to the Wiltshire Museum," which, you know, has done archeological work on all these places and [inaudible] cathedrals. The Wiltshire Museum, which is very - it's right across from the Salisbury Cathedral.
MS. LARSEN: It's a very wonderful area. It's a beautiful place.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes, it is.
MS. LARSEN: Interesting. Very interesting.
MR. CAPONIGRO: So the stones got me.
MS. LARSEN: And when you came back with that body of work, what happened to it? Did you show it?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Ah, '67. I arrived back in the summer of '67. We got there at the end of the summer of '66. That's when we actually arrived in Ireland, set up house, a place for John and Eleanor to live, and me contacting the archeologists and finding the maps and going on field trips. Then in '67 we decided to go over from Ireland to England. So the first trip was spring of '67. And I got the job - I got a telegram at the end of that year from New York University. Of course, we used up all the money from the Guggenheim grant. We were going home broke.
MS. LARSEN: Well, three of you. I mean, that's really something.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. And it was a small grant, $5,000, which wouldn't last a couple of months at this time.
MS. LARSEN: Yes. And now -
MR. CAPONIGRO: You know it just wouldn't work.
MS. LARSEN: But people went to college on half of that.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes.
MS. LARSEN: But still, a family with a child.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And it was cheap in Ireland at that time. That was what helped a great deal. We got $4 to the pound. That was a lot.
MS. LARSEN: I remember. Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: We got triple our money. But we left, came back to the States - and in fact, I came back earlier than I thought I wanted to; I really wanted to stay longer - because Peter Bunnell called and said that New York University was after Peter Bunnell, John Szarkowski, and whoever else they thought, and they nominated Paul Caponigro, to teach in the New York University film department. And they were going to discuss the visuals and the aesthetics and this, that, and the other. And we weren't going to teach filmmaking.
MS. LARSEN: Right.
MR. CAPONIGRO: But they thought we would be an add, an addition, to. And I said, "I'll do it." I need the money. And that's why I moved to Connecticut. I didn't want to live in New York City. I'd had enough of that. And so we found a place on the train line in Connecticut, over the border, and I would commute into the city and teach at New York University. So Peter Bunnell and John Szarkowski got me that job, and I did that for about two or three years. And it was at that time - when I got back and we talked with Peter, and he saw the material and said, we have an opening and we've got to have a show of this work. So I did some of the first Stonehenge prints and Irish landscapes and some of the crosses.
MS. LARSEN: Now, where was the -
MR. CAPONIGRO: At the Museum of Modern Art. He had taken the assistant curatorship under John Szarkowski. This is long before he went to Princeton. But Peter put that show together. Opened that space.
MS. LARSEN: Now, and the year was?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Fall of '67.
MS. LARSEN: So there you were, showing at the Museum of Modern Art, right in the crosshairs of the art world.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And a bunch of prints that mystified people. I remember the first two years, I forget who the critics were or the people who were writing. "You know, we can understand his sunflowers and we can understand his landscapes. But what's he doing? Is this a catalogue for the prehistoric sites?"
[Tape stops, restarts]
MR. CAPONIGRO: The stones were viewed by some kind of quite interesting, and then to just as many others, they were curious to know, you know, why Caponigro does these lovely landscapes and his lovely still lifes. And what in the world is he up to with these stones? So it was not accepted so easily. It took two or three years before people began to see them as more and more of the work was being printed and shown. And then, of course, the world decided that these stones were important and looked into. That helped them along. But let's face it, to me they were a mystery. So when they got into the photographic art world, they were a mystery.
MS. LARSEN: But the timing was remarkable because I really think the nature of that imagery and the nature of what must have also been being shown in places like the Museum of Modern Art, there is a congruence of form: the big, the definite, the architectonic. Those are all things of that moment. And that work was right for that moment, visually and in that context of Manhattan art at that time.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, what do I know? I was just being told what I had to do. [Laughs] You'll ask me, "What's your next project?" And I say, "I don't know. They haven't told me yet." It's a lot like that.
MS. LARSEN: Well, that's interesting. Very intriguing. Each of us enters something from a different perspective. You know, I'll see one of your photographs in a textbook and it'll seem, you know, just right with other things at that time. But in photography, there were other ideas abroad at that moment, were there not? Like street photography and urban concerns and hybrids of media and -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well - give me one minute.
MS. LARSEN: Certainly.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, it wasn't that. Photography itself suddenly being acknowledged as an art form and collected by museums and programs being instituted into the universities, wasn't that the time that photography suddenly became, I would say, not only conscious but self-conscious of itself? The self-consciousness being - I'm going a little bit overboard in placing an importance on it. And I suppose I can see that they felt they had to encompass all of what was going on in photography, from science to art. And so then all these special departments came in - journalism, poeticism, and whatever ism, and whatever "wasm", and all that going on.
MS. LARSEN: Well, it seemed like -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Simultaneously, the educators, I think, started a whole new direction of conceptualism, where - I don't know what it is. These people were educated in the universities and never left. They stayed there and taught others photography. And that stuff generated a lot of intellectual stuff, such as the conceptual really is. It's like they're mind games, space games. Write on the negative, it changes the space. And I think the emotional aspect of the art photography was being pushed back, and the thrust was for, well, now, listen. We have an art form and we have a history, and now we have to start building the history, at the expense of sometimes -
MS. LARSEN: Find yourself a niche and see where you could fit, and then build your little house?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Oh, yes. And then the idea of being original set in, and that created a lot of - what's the word? - Anything goes. Anything goes.
MS. LARSEN: Suddenly, too, for example, like with the pop artists, someone like Warhol, photography, the photographic image, became a tool; or with someone like Diane Arbus, a kind of star treatment put onto a photographic body of work; and that separateness or otherness, like oh, photography's over here and paintings over here. People started kind of worrying about that.
MR. CAPONIGRO: What did we have at the Photo- Secession back in the early 1900s? A lot of complaints that photography had its dignity and we're going to stand up for it, and we're not going to put - we're not going to paint in clouds, and we're not going to make these photographs look like paintings. We are photographers. And then Stieglitz got championed for inventing the "equivalent," which gave it a little extra dignity. And oh, well, we - you know, we've given a voice, too. And all the self-consciousness began to come into it. No, we're a straight photographer. And where are we now? We're right back there when photography was not accepted and they tried to make it look like painting in order to get accepted. And we're now painting on photographs. It's like it's now the thing to do. It's the fad. It's in.
MS. LARSEN: And yet there are times when, just from my small observation with limited time, where the separateness of the photo world also became sort of mannered, and the fact that photographic conversation fed on itself, and people talked to one another in a very almost academic manner. I felt that in Los Angeles, where the photographers only look at photographers. They talked about things that they all knew about and that were about each other. It was a little precious at times.
MR. CAPONIGRO: So insular and precious. Yes. I wrote an article for Parabola magazine on the craft at the time. And the thrust of it was photography having come in and made easily accessible, relatively, to the public in general, to the human in general, the industrial age took the craft and the use of hands and the making of -
[END TAPE 3 SIDE B]
MR. CAPONIGRO: So that industrial age took away the work, the craft, the art that was generated out of [inaudible] most people. And photography I saw as a way of putting it back in their hands. You could - you didn't have to master art. You didn't have to be that special or study for so long.
MS. LARSEN: Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: It's hard to become a master of one's craft in the arts, sculpting, anything. Whatever it is. Photography could give it to you quickly.
MS. LARSEN: Hence the popularity.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And then it became very popular. I mean, Dr. Land told me once - he said, "You guys need this, you know. You really do want to be artists again. You want to feel as if you're part of that whole creative art process." And so the camera really was a very special item.
MS. LARSEN: It empowered you.
MR. CAPONIGRO: It did, it did [inaudible]. What do we have? When we went to - always the negative side comes in, where - you know, the power of art resides emotionally in the heart. And that emotional realm, that emotional language, that unknown, it's been described as a great substance.
MS. LARSEN: That's why we look at art or listen to music or read a book.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And so quickly recognize in so-called works of art that are produced that are devoid of that. It's made from a different place. The intellect takes over or sleepiness takes over or whatever. So the art demands awareness and the participation. And this is what we need in the new digital realm, is how to get the emotions involved and not be such a strictly technological process. Photography did that, and gave art back to the people. And for the last ten, fifteen years, it's been the experimentation of putting the paint in alongside or right in with, on top of, merging painting and photography. So we're still in, I think, a big flux of separating out the desire to be an artist and what really is produced as truly good art, that could possibly match some of the ancient left us, some very powerful pieces that you can tell how great they are because they just shut you up. So when that arrives for this particular era, it's hard to say. I think we're definitely in process.
MS. LARSEN: Well, the desire to be an artist touched with the ability to actually do it always in this place [inaudible] that you hope they are.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. We hope. We hope. And on top of it, psychology, psychiatry, therapy in the streets, also enters now and gives it an added, gosh where are we?
MS. LARSEN: It seems, from my looking at photography, that sometimes I go to the photo exhibition, especially if there's a lot of people in it. And I think the sense of mobility [inaudible] something that - that it's photographing something better or something - it's uncovering from a spark that are dark [inaudible], and seeking it out, too.
MR. CAPONIGRO: We are disturbed. We are disturbed and have been for some number of years. And that disturbance, I think, is in the imagery. According to Jung and a few others, we have [inaudible]. We're maybe in the process of trying to understand how that emerged, if it emerged. Not a lot of happiness. Not a lot of happiness happening today, you know? There's a few, a few that look fun and enjoy [inaudible]. But for the most part, it is what you say.
MS. LARSEN: I wish it weren't so. It's just that one comes away and thinks, wow, you know. Did they just filter this out and seek all this? Or is this -
MR. CAPONIGRO: I call it therapy in the streets. There's a need to get this out. We can't always afford a psychiatrist or a therapist. And so we can hang it on the walls and it's therapy.
MS. LARSEN: But your work, I think, it's not necessarily cheery and laughing, but it has a kind of positive grandeur about it for the most part, that there's a positive valence or a larger view that it presents. It's not, you know, seeking those dark corners.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, I've watched myself and I've thought about it. And I have a pretty good idea of what I'm asking. And I am a human being, and my humanity gets into my pictures. And there are sad times, and there are very bright times. And there is a certain sense of humor that I'm [inaudible]. But for the most part, there is a positivity. There's a definite positivity, and not necessarily because I have been positive all the time. I'm a human being. I'm very moody. And that's not always possible. But what I recognize is in the working, I've thought, as the ancients thought, that art is a sacred activity. As such, you're pursuing the sacred, which has to do with transcending what the poor beast has to go through. And so the positivity in my work comes from always reaching for that transcendent time. As I said about certain photographs of Edward Weston, he wanted to penetrate, that something became transparent, see a little further into it. That's when you aim at not only universal, but at the very mysterious elements of what being is. So I'm after the mystery. And if I can last long enough and get enough energy stolen back from the structures that run our lives today, I might be an artist in this day and age. Of course, I'm busy paying taxes and trying to decide who to vote for, that we're losing a great deal of energy that we could be using at pursuing the depths of our art. So I'm kind of desperately myself now, to arrange some time and space. It's important to really go further by trying to penetrate deeper from where I've gotten so far.
MS. LARSEN: But when you went to Mexico and you worked on -
MR. CAPONIGRO: New Mexico. 1967 was the job with Peter and John Szarkowski at New York University; we stayed in Connecticut right up until 1973. I taught three of those years. The other three years of staying in Connecticut, I did some work jobs and was selling prints, that kind of thing. But in '73, I decided we're going to break away from New England and we're going to move to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where there is another layer of something special. There were a lot of reasons for the move. The marriage was beginning to get a little shaky. The Connecticut schools - in the grade schools there was some marijuana smoking going on. I didn't want my kid subjected to this. Fortunately, John listened to us about and saw some programs that drugs are not a good idea. They really [inaudible]. Then my son in high school, in his high school. He got three or four of his buddies off of drugs. He just reprimanded them, and treated them as if he was their big brother and scolded them. But we got -
MS. LARSEN: So that was scary, though.
MR. CAPONIGRO: But we didn't like that. And the society at that time in Connecticut was not healthy. You know, Fairfield County is questionable. I mean, what was that movie they made, Peyton Place?
MS. LARSEN: Oh, it was a sort of -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Which really represented -
MS. LARSEN: The values of it?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. All that kind of stuff. It was -
MS. LARSEN: It doesn't sound like -
MR. CAPONIGRO: In my opinion, slightly degenerate and bit overly complacent. Something was falling apart. We needed that stimulation.
MS. LARSEN: Not a place where the artist's values that we've been talking about would hold first position.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, it would superficially. A lot of people go to art exhibitions just to be seen there. And that's the gallery type that you find.
MS. LARSEN: But still, you know, their social position and -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, between social and my own -
[Tape stops, restarts]
MS. LARSEN: All right. Let's see where we are. So New Mexico.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. Connecticut was good. Six years. It was a good place to be. It gave me a lot of very good photographs out of the wood series and the water series, and set up a very nice darkroom. I got a lot of the megaliths from the Irish trips. There were also trips back to the British Isles, both with the family and I would go solo every once in a while.
MS. LARSEN: Did you have an audience in Britain or Ireland?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No.
MS. LARSEN: You didn't?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No. There wasn't one. They themselves were not fully aware, or it wasn't given the prominence. The scientists and the archeologists at that time were stiffly busy with science. [Inaudible] mention the idea of some extraterrestrial energy that might be involved with this megalith [inaudible] they would shut you off. So they were very tight, very tight about it. You know, everything was carefully organized and categorized, and they really didn't want to entertain anything but what they could see directly at the end of their noses. So there wasn't [inaudible].
MS. LARSEN: Were you connecting with the world of art in Manhattan?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No. No, I was outside the world in general. Any connection really was with the Museum of Modern Art, with Peter Bunnell and John Szarkowski. And at that time, I was being invited both to Princeton University, Yale University, a couple of other places, Harvard, all of whom tried to get me to become a professor at their university and set up a department of photography because my career had brought me to that point where it was recognized that I was an excellent teacher. And they wanted me to come into their department and take care of the photos. And I would go for workshops. But I declined on all of the - I said, you know, you can't hire me. I don't have a degree. I do not have a bachelor's degree. They said, well, we'll give you one.
MS. LARSEN: [Laughs.] So it held no allure from the security that would -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Oh, the security especially was one place that I felt was going to be really dangerous. No, I'm not going to do faculty meetings. I'm not going to do the social stuff. The other professors and teachers at the universities, I'm not going to that [inaudible]. And they would say, "Well, we're only signing you up for two days a week." I said, no. Two days a week, and the rest of the week with this activity and that activity and what little promotional thing is going to - no. Please. No, I -
MS. LARSEN: That was a very astute analysis.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. I know.
MS. LARSEN: Most people don't know that.
MR. CAPONIGRO: I knew that - as a matter of fact, some of them were a bit miffed. They thought, who the hell are you? I'd say, "Well, please. I've just gotten started on this project with these prehistoric stones. I've got to make several more trips back there, and to try to maintain a job here and do this job is not going to work." There was a very well-known painter at Harvard who understood. He said, "You want to be [inaudible] to be there." Back in the late '60s, early '70s, a curious little man. But he was well-known, relatively. So I got a contact with art in general. I think the world of art - painters, sculptors - well, 1959, at the time I came back from my travels and settled in Boston, '59 through '64, '65, I had a lot of interaction with the Boston artists, but not New York artists. That was strictly before what photography [inaudible] and what was happening at the universities. So I found some ground between the Ivy League universities. And I decided no. And I thought, a real break. You know, get away from all of this. Because they were after me consistently. Well, he's coming for a month, or be an artist in residence, and that stuff. And the marriage was difficult. I was cracking under the successful career and trying to be a husband and a father and an artist. And all of it was, you know, bearing down on me. And I thought, I've changed. Let's get out of here and start fresh. We had made one trip to a workshop or two to New Mexico. And we both liked it, and we thought, let's do that.
MS. LARSEN: And it has an artistic tradition and a [inaudible] tradition as well.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. [Inaudible] So we left there in '74. And I had my big breakdown right after I got there. I mean, the weight of all that travel, all that university stuff, all that - all the students that I would be working with, half of them didn't want to go away. They were bringing portfolios to my studio in Connecticut. It was too much. So I let go, kind of [inaudible].
MS. LARSEN: Was there anything -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, I mean, physically it was incapacitating. But mostly I remember all the internal psychological activity, both in the dream world, in visions that were appearing while I was awake and functioning. It was very extraordinary.
MS. LARSEN: You had lost your balance or something?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, I don't think I did because I recognized what was going on. And I was holding myself together to go through it. I wasn't going to turn myself over to the medical profession and get myself drugged. I knew that that was going to be - that's like the Army telling me to stay in line. I never liked staying in line. I always revolted against the lines.
MS. LARSEN: Did you react badly to New Mexico, do you think?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No.
MS. LARSEN: No?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No. New Mexico, I mean, I drove in from one state to the other. And as soon as I got over the border into New Mexico, the skies literally gave me a vision of what I was in for. And it showed me very specific events that did indeed unfold in that way, and actually happened. It included the divorce.
MS. LARSEN: And you kept driving?
MR. CAPONIGRO: I kept driving. I just thought, okay. [Inaudible] And then it was - you know, when I told people I was moving to New Mexico, and they said, oh, the land of enchantment.
MS. LARSEN: [Laughs.]
MR. CAPONIGRO: Because it's known as that.
MS. LARSEN: Sure. Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And while I was driving into it, and the skies were doing this, and a certain amount of rain was coming down, I thought, oh, I'm in the land of enchantment.
MS. LARSEN: But there are various kinds of enchantments.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, okay. So let's - we'll just accept this as an enchantment. But it also gave me a realization: All right, you're going to have to go through some things. And I prepared myself for it, and went through them, and they were fabulous. The insights, the kind of activity, always informative of the world I'm constantly pursuing, which is [inaudible] for the eye. The closest you can get is if your eye opens, you're in a dream world because the dream world at certain times can provide you insight and subconscious wellings up that are very important to you.
MS. LARSEN: Wake up, and you're in another place.
MR. CAPONIGRO: In the dream world, I would be able to see certain things and then realize, ah-hah. You have to watch for this and its translation when you dream at night. So I would always take this as the crossing of another threshold. There would be new thresholds. But the trip to New Mexico was like already going through that door, and I was making myself ready for it. If it included the breakdown, so be it. But I'm not going to - you know, the same way with the accident I had eight years ago. The doctors wanted to sedate me because I was having what they thought were hallucinations. They weren't hallucinations.
MS. LARSEN: You fell down?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yeah, I had a bad fall that just about killed me. And that was another thing, to get through another door because I saw it. But there were some beautiful images, symmetries, insights into a psychological, emotional breakdown. It was fascinating. So who the hell wants somebody to dump on it and quell it, you know, send it back down, when here I've been digging and digging and waiting for this -
MS. LARSEN: It's like you're really on a roller coaster.
MR. CAPONIGRO: It's not fun. No, it's not fun.
MS. LARSEN: No. You're not moving at a pace that's entirely comfortable.
MR. CAPONIGRO: But, you know, when it's over, you look back at some of the extraordinary patterns of images that give a description of the eternal process. And then to be able to relate them to certain mythological expressions you get from 2,000 years ago, a legend that describes that such-and-such a hero went through the so-and-so and saw [inaudible]. And so the meaning of archetype began to jell and become part of the process. But in and on that level, we can be informed about the realm of mystery.
MS. LARSEN: And that's a great [inaudible].
MR. CAPONIGRO: Uh-huh. [Affirmative] So I was inviting mystery. I knew that that had to be a main staple, mystery, to have known the power of silence.
MS. LARSEN: Right here in America.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Right here in America.
MS. LARSEN: [Laughs.] In this wholesome, touristic place.
MR. CAPONIGRO: No. Let me tell you, one of the greatest things I got from Gurdjieff was that that kind of antagonism head-on can cause friction in the human being. And you're either overcome by this head-on impact of what the culture is up to and the negativities of the structure and the society, or the human being can stand fast, take advantage of the fire that is generated by the friction, go through it, and use that fire to continue. You know, he made it very clear. Friction in your life is for growth. Don't hand it over. Don't succumb. So that was powerful.
MS. LARSEN: That's very - yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: You know, it confirmed what I had to go through as a child. I was in certain situations, and I knew that if I lay down on this one, then the steamroller runs over you. So you've got to stand up. There's an instinct involved here. And Gurdjieff simply brought it to a higher octave of perceiving and dealing in the world.
MS. LARSEN: If you're conscious of that lesson, then you hope you can [inaudible] to the application.
MR. CAPONIGRO: It comes. You're really on a search. The material will follow you and step in front of you at the right time. So all of that was going on, and I began to understand more and more what it meant that the artist had to suffer. Instead of the back of the hand to the forehead and "I vant to be alone" [sic] -
MS. LARSEN: It's not the fainting ladies and -
MR. CAPONIGRO: All that kind of stuff, it really is that the artist has to remain open even under duress because without the opening, information will not come through. Inspiration will not register. So you have to bear the pain of dealing with whatever the antagonism is and go through it so that you're still available to the realm of inspiration, which holds hands with the realm of mystery. And then the mystery is yours.
MS. LARSEN: But there is a certain price.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Everything is at a certain price. If we only knew what to trade for what, and not merely work at the stock market. So I was grateful for [inaudible] because it brought two powerful insights, not only into reading in the deeper minds of mythology and the subconscious, and yield especially. Freud was right. So realizing you can be informed. Lots of people know this. If you allow yourself to deal with the uncertainties, [inaudible]. At a certain point, I realized they couldn't kill me. Go ahead. Fire. Fire away. You're going to take pieces of my flesh away, but you can't kill me because it's already got its foot in that other dimension. So my photography has to - you know, at this point I'm addressing my photography as the means to maintain the contact with that unseen dimension in the hopes that the images will inform, symbolically or any other way, to add a little more insight than a good fairy tale can do.
MS. LARSEN: Well, the landscape was entirely different. The foliage was different in the whole range of what you're offered usually seems quite different [inaudible].
MR. CAPONIGRO: If the audience can read it emotionally and not merely relate it to landscape that's already been done, except that I used it in trees, then maybe it will do its job. But the audience has to meet it. My job is to do it. And I can feel the projection, the vision, the vision which is the meaning of my projection. What I feel in my emotions is projected to a certain place, and that's what I'm [inaudible].
MS. LARSEN: So the switch to New Mexico, and what it had to offer was -
MR. CAPONIGRO: That was an opening. That was an incentive on the next step of the challenge. And some very good things were - some excellent photographs were made there, as well as meeting equivalents to the experience of being at a very charged sacred site in the British Isles. Certain of those Indian sites and certain pieces of landscape, special kind of mountains or - it's very hard to describe what those empty spaces of desert are charged and -
MS. LARSEN: Yes. Even in terms of lightning, they do carry that. It's amazing.
MR. CAPONIGRO: So that confirmed that the invisible was hot on my trail and I was hot on its trail.
MS. LARSEN: And were you kind of cut off from that whole support structure back East, or did it reach out to you?
MR. CAPONIGRO: It's when I began to - no. There were still contacts with the galleries. I had earned a reputation, and a gallery in Boston wanted a show, and so-and-so wanted a show. And Szarkowski put together "Photography in the '60s." We need some of your prints. Minor is doing his "Life to the Seventh Power," and I want some of your photographs of so-and-so.
MS. LARSEN: Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: So there was a lot of activity, and people drew on my photographs to take part in that. But -
[END TAPE 4 SIDE A]
MS. LARSEN: You encountered Robert Singer in Japan?
MR. CAPONIGRO: In Japan, and he wanted to know what I was up to. He said, "What do you hope to accomplish? I know who you are and what your photography is about." And in fact, he had taken a course with Peter Bunnell while Peter was a Princeton, and I was a guest teacher and lecturer there. And he sat in the back of the room listening to my lecture. And when I got to Japan - totally unprepared; I didn't know anybody, I just went - and word got to him and he got word to - there was only one person I was going to see, and that was the editor of a Japanese camera magazine. I had an appointment to see him. It was arranged by I forget who in the United States.
MS. LARSEN: In Tokyo?
MR. CAPONIGRO: In Tokyo. And I got there, and he handed me a note and said, "This man wants to contact you." And it was Robert Singer. And he said, "You may not know me. I was attending one of your lectures. I studied with Peter Bunnell," and so forth. "If you get to Kyoto, I am working at such-and-such and I am studying at so-and-so, living here. Please look me up." And so he turned out to be wonderful.
MS. LARSEN: Yes. He is wonderful.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Anyway, he said, "Well, you know, I see you're photographing. Do you want to do this" - I said, "Well, yes. I'm also here because my sensei, Sensei Nakazono" - which means inner garden, by the way - "told me that I could meet his teacher and learn something about the Kototama." He said, "The what?" I said, "The Kototama."
MS. LARSEN: And Singer is very clued in, very well educated in Japanese culture. That's surprising.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. Well, he said, "Well, good. We'll start. I'll find you a guide," and this, that, and the other. He said, "There's a Swiss woman, you really ought to meet the Swiss woman, who's here doing research on religion." So he said, "We'll all have dinner together." And I didn't see him for about a week or so. I had gone off to photograph such-and-such, so-and-so. And I came back and he said, "The Swiss woman is very anxious to meet you, very anxious." I said, "I've never met her." He said, "She wants to know how an American knows about Kototama when almost no one knows about Kototama. And if her circumstances weren't so extraordinary, she wouldn't know about Kototama." Now, the Japanese won't tell her anything.
MS. LARSEN: Yes. Not surprising.
MR. CAPONIGRO: There are some people who know about Kototama. I said, "Yes. She's got to find them in so-and-so." He said, "Yes. They are there, and she wants to question them because they do know something. And she thinks that if you - if she becomes your interpreter, that is accepted" -
MS. LARSEN: [Laughs.]. Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: - "by the Japanese. But they will tell her nothing." And so she became - she was thrilled to meet me. She said, "Who the hell are you? Where do you come from? How did you get this?" And I said, "My Japanese sensei knows a man in Tokyo who is a national treasure and studying this religion." She was just thrilled. She said, "Well, now, the Omoto people have a hold of this. I've discovered that. But they will tell me nothing. If you will allow me to be your interpreter and you want to ask them questions." I said, "Fabulous. I'd love to ask them."
MS. LARSEN: That's a great arrangement.
MR. CAPONIGRO: So there she was. She sat quietly while I asked a lot of questions. And she recorded it all. She was so happy.
MS. LARSEN: [Laughs.] Do you think it was because she's a woman?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. Precisely. She said, "The woman's place is over there."
MS. LARSEN: Oh, it's, you know, three counties away. It's just the way it is. What can you say?
MS. LARSEN: Well, actually, my teacher, Sensei Nakazono, and his sons, I said, "Well, don't you miss Japan? Will you ever go back?" He said, "Listen. Once we caught the idea of free spirit in the world, we moved to Paris, the whole family. And then we went to India and stayed there for a while. Eventually came to America. We can never go back to Japan. It's too rigid for us. You know, our needs and what we want to learn and what we want to do, much too rigid. We could never go back."
MS. LARSEN: In many ways, the Japan that many of us are greatly fond of is what's left of the old Japan, which probably, if we were living as contemporaries in the old Japan, we'd still find it rigid in another way. But there are beautiful, beautiful things.
MR. CAPONIGRO: There are. I've never seen bamboo molded into so many unbelievable pieces of utility and art. I mean, there -
MS. LARSEN: I remember the sound of the bamboo knocking against one another in the groves in Kyoto in the wind. You know, it would be like this "knock, knock" sound. And I've never heard that any other place. I'm sure it exists.
MR. CAPONIGRO: You go buy a piece of candy and you walk away with a package that's a work of art. As a matter of fact, I was able to get hold of a couple of books in the States before I went, How to Wrap Five Eggs. Do you know that book?
MS. LARSEN: Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And then I found the other one, How to Wrap Five More Eggs, you know.
MS. LARSEN: Sure.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And it's all about the craft in packaging, and so beautiful.
MS. LARSEN: Yes. Craftsmanship is truly revered and understood by a certain segment of the Japanese society. And it trickles down into everyday life. It's very beautiful.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. I wanted to go back for that, to try to photograph some of that as well as -
MS. LARSEN: Did you ever do that?
MR. CAPONIGRO: - as well as breathe in. No. I never went back again. Just that one trip. I had two other invitations, but I think one trip it was just going to cost too much and I couldn't afford it. The other one, I was going to be supported, but it was going to be for such a short time. I mean, to sit on a plane for umpteen hours -
MS. LARSEN: Twenty hours plus from here.
MR. CAPONIGRO: It doesn't work for me. It's just as bad as - it's altitude sickness, you know.
MS. LARSEN: Oh, sure. Oh, yes. Well, so we're not exactly proceeding chronologically here. But as you move through into the '80s, and you were still in Santa Fe but still traveling?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. It was the mid-'70s that I met Sensei Nakazono, which was part of my ongoing investigation of different systems. I was involved with the Gurdjieff movement. They had - they still have - a foundation, the Gurdjieff Foundation, in New York City. I got involved with them in the late '50s and stayed with them until 1967, when I got the Guggenheim to go to Ireland. Once that happened, I left the Gurdjieff work. It was a good seven, eight-year period. And I stayed with it because I felt that it was giving me the most out of the systems I had looked into. But I also looked into other systems continuously. I would read and I would study and I would go places. And when I hit Ireland, I realized there was a whole - just like the Kototama, not necessarily unknown, but it really didn't hit its stride. The ancient Celtic myths and the fairy tales and the legends of the Irish culture going way back had a power equal to what I was catching with the Kototama. You know, I studied five, six years with Sensei Nakazono with this breathing meditation. And simultaneously, I was looking at it from the viewpoint of, well, I did the Gurdjieff work and I've studied sacred dance as well as art with - you know, these drawings came from that period. Then when I hit Ireland, a whole new system, a whole new teaching - not a system but a teaching - was surfacing for me through the ancient Celtic material and the prehistoric cultures. And so I was at all times investigating, just like going to get a brand-new paper that's just come out. If I heard about a certain teaching, I would want to find out. And how does it relate? So I was doing my own course in comparative religions. And that always continued. And that was the thread that held me, my real interest, throughout the photographing and being a teacher and going to New York University and teaching there. All that stuff was by the way. But that kept going right through the '70s, '80s, and never really stopped. Never really stopped.
MS. LARSEN: And probably is still ongoing.
MR. CAPONIGRO: There were interruptions. And it will be ongoing. So that really was my private foundation of investigation and study, and was always my springboard for making my photographs because I really did feel like the ancient Japanese master. Take your shoes off and shut up. Work. Let the medium be your teacher. Always had that. So a very heavy interest in the Irish material because the land itself when I got there in 1967, and then continued going back every year for the next twelve years -
MS. LARSEN: You did?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. In order to produce that book called Megaliths, I would go for a couple of weeks and then write home for money so I could stay a couple of months. So it was a long period I would stay every year. And that was a love affair that lasted quite a long time. And I was getting it really from the land. The land itself was the teacher. And then by the way I would, you know, pick up some books and read about the Irish fairy tales and read about the so-and-so.
MS. LARSEN: That's become very au courant with actually the generation in its 20s now, hasn't it?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Precisely. It hit them hard, and for good reason. The new Wicca religion and all of that kind of stuff is a return to certain pagan ways, pagan belief, Druid activity. I mean, they were the last real - who were the Druids? Do you know who the Druids were? They were the last real ecologists. We ecologists today are lip service ecologists. You look into their methods, their ways, their practices, their teachings, they were ecologists. Everything fit in, and they respected and worked with everything, in which case, if it was effective, it became magic because air/water/fire/earth, the basic tools, were at their command. And the work with them - the Druids worked with them. They could either make it rain, just like the Indians dance rain. So I could feel all that just by being in the land itself because Ireland, if one can try to imagine or fantasize, Ireland is a dreamer. The atmosphere of Ireland is a dream world that has as much palpability, as much dense atmosphere - in other words, you can walk into it and wonder, what is happening to you? It is truly a magical place. And one can believe in the fairies simply by the effect that it can have on you. That was why I went back so often, not merely to collect stones but to be in the presence of the land. And the British Isles has that something where they have not tarmacked it over. I mean, there's been a lot of progress. England in particular is roads after roads after roads, all -
MS. LARSEN: Cultivated and managed.
MR. CAPONIGRO: They haven't quite done that, but they're in process now of doing that to Ireland. They're making it a really big tourist center. The Irish are tired of being poor. They're going to take the money that's being put in by the European community to develop. Well, I don't know if that's fortunate or unfortunate, changes through the years. But Ireland was for me a real-
MS. LARSEN: That's strange. Those of us who've never been to Ireland and who know it just through the news think of it as a troubled place.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, that's quite superficial because the trouble is really six counties that the English took over. The trouble has been between the English and the Irish for a few thousand years. These are clan wars, you know.
MS. LARSEN: Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Even within Ireland, they had six major provinces, maybe more - I forget - and the Connacht men were after the Wicklow men. And, you know, these are clan wars. And kings would take their seats. And Britain was involved. There would be wars across the waters, and the Scots would beat up on - it goes way back. It's really not about the provinces.
MS. LARSEN: Is it mostly an urban thing, and you're talking about the countryside, or -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, the English pretty much took over six counties. Six counties is a lot. It's called Northern Ireland. It's the north of Ireland. The rest of Ireland is free of all that, but troubled by the fact that they've lost a good piece of their land and some of their people, too. But, you know, the Irish/English thing has been going on for hundreds of years. It's not just this skirmish that's going on. Well, I got lost to the atmosphere of Ireland.
MS. LARSEN: So you were living in Santa Fe but traveling frequently to Ireland; also to Japan?
MR. CAPONIGRO: '67 through '72, I continued traveling back and forth to the British Isles. And John, my son John and my wife Eleanor, would come with me half of the time. The other half of the time, they'd stay home. John was in school. But when they could come, they would go. They both realized - even John in his youth knew that, you know, we were going somewhere special. So that happened up until '73, at which time we decided that we would move from New England and go to Santa Fe. So by '74, we were thoroughly established in Santa Fe. I continued to go back to the British Isles, but I spent most of my time looking into the Southwest. 1976 was simultaneously - '75 was a very difficult year. We were separated, Eleanor and I, trying to sort out our lives. '76 I got another Guggenheim. The divorce was finalized in '76. And that's when I decided, I need something wild and different to get me through this divorce thing. So I decided to go to Japan for the first time, since I had met the Japanese sensei and all of that.
MS. LARSEN: Right.
MR. CAPONIGRO: So there was that content with Japan. When I got back from that, I continued with the Southwest and would still make trips back. And it was not every year now but every other year I would go to the British Isles and continue work there. But by this time, I felt that I had done enough of the prehistoric stones. I was now focusing on the ancient churches, the ancient Celtic churches, stone buildings, beautifully masoned, crafted stone buildings in the land.
MS. LARSEN: Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Who still have a feeling of the ancient religion, although Rome had moved in, sent St. Patrick to drive the snakes out of Ireland, which means -
MS. LARSEN: The spirits?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Not the spirits, but the serpent was like the prime - one of the prime symbols for an earth energy that they were aware of, the ancient Druids and the likes of those, the pagans. The serpent was like the powerful symbol of something that they revered and knew about in the earth energies. So St. Patrick had to drive the serpent out, which he never did.
MS. LARSEN: Drive that other way of thinking out.
MR. CAPONIGRO: He never did. He had to build his churches on the very sacred sites of the pagans in order to pull them in.
MS. LARSEN: Sure. Also to -
MR. CAPONIGRO: St. Patrick never drove the snakes out of Ireland. The pagans taught him how to drive the snake straight up his spine, which is a form of Kundalini yoga.
MS. LARSEN: It ended up being -
MR. CAPONIGRO: So those stone churches that came just after that period where Rome had already come, began to establish the rules of monasteries and this, that, and the other, these early monks didn't want much part of that. So they would move deep into the land and build their little stone oratories and churches in places, as well as on the islands where they couldn't be touched. So they continued with the old ways, and you can feel that in these stone churches. You know, there's something still primal and megalithic in the reverence for stone that is in these ancient churches. And I was after that, trying to pull that out of those stones. So that became the project rather than the megaliths themselves from about the early '80s right through.
MS. LARSEN: In a way, you're almost following that through chronologically.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Actually, yes.
MS. LARSEN: That's the aftermath, the next thing. What was the critical reception of that body of work as that moved along?
MR. CAPONIGRO: The first few years - I think we discussed this in an earlier tape - the historians and the critics didn't know quite what I was doing. I mean, you're a landscape photographer. Why are you - why this catalogue of stones? They didn't catch it at first. And it took a few years, at which time a little book would come out by Gerald Hawkins, Stonehenge Decoded, and it started to pull the mystery of the ancient stones into the world. And then, you know, by the mid-'70s, late '70s, the idea of the megaliths as one of those mysterious things could be decoded. Maybe we could understand. And so there was a big thrust in interest in these ancient sites, linking them even to the Southwest Indians, where they found similar designs cut into the stone which actually marked certain solstices. So there was a science involved of following the sun and moon alignments and all that. So the modern age was trying to get some information from the ancients.
MS. LARSEN: As all these years go by and this body of work grows, though, it becomes a considerable part of your career, a large -
MR. CAPONIGRO: It is.
MS. LARSEN: I believe. Is that true?
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. I think so.
MS. LARSEN: It's a good proportion of your -
MR. CAPONIGRO: I think it's a very important -
MS. LARSEN: It's not just an excursion or a change of subject or something that took your fancy, but it's a long pursuit, but related bodies of work that happened at different times.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Which will, as I see it, help me to refine what I will continue to do.
MS. LARSEN: Does being here in Maine have anything to do with - I mean, it doesn't occur to me that there's something like that here in Maine. There's landscapes, certainly.
MR. CAPONIGRO: The fact is, I don't know what I'm doing in Maine other than the fact that I visited over the last fifteen years or more, coming to teach. My son got turned onto it when he used to come visit me, and the teaching about the land. And I built this house. This is really a matter of convenience. It's a good place to be and work, and I would say primarily digest. The last eight years, since the accident, in effect -
MS. LARSEN: That was in '91?
MR. CAPONIGRO: That was in '91. Those ensuing eight years, right up to this time, was a matter of digesting not only the accident but ways of pulling out of it and trying to upright again, to be fully functional again. That was a very difficult business. I mean, if I had trouble with my health earlier because of overdoing, this was another matter, where they ran more chemistry through me in that hospital when I had that accident that upset the metabolism and just brought on conditions, a significant amount of weight as a result of all that prednisone that gets put into your system. All of this - I was doing battle with just getting upright. But simultaneously, I knew when I left Santa Fe that that meant leaving the past, and that I had no idea what the future was going to do to me or for me. But I knew that the break had been made, and I made the break. And the last eight years has been actually minimal photographing.
MS. LARSEN: When did you leave Santa Fe?
MR. CAPONIGRO: 1992.
MS. LARSEN: '92. Okay. And you went to California?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No. I came directly here.
MS. LARSEN: Here? Okay.
MR. CAPONIGRO: I continued to go. The winters were a little too severe for me here in my condition. I would just drive cross-country and think about things, more to think about things than to drive. And California would be restful for me, tranquil. So it's been a period of digesting and releasing. Mostly releasing. I mean, that break with Santa Fe was very, very specific. It was - an ancient hatchet just came down and said, that goes that way. You go this way.
MS. LARSEN: Was it just becoming too crowded and touristic?
MR. CAPONIGRO: No. I don't give a damn about that. I was way up in the hills away from it all. I'm having trouble selling my house right now because it's too remote. You know, I know a few people here. I knew a few people there. I had a very small circle of - a community to interact with. So it's really not that different. And I love that land. I mean, I really liked being in it. Made some good photographs in it. Continued photographing there. It was a matter of what goes on inside that had to be looked at in terms of how far I had come, how I got there, what I was actually in as a result of all of that, and literally getting close to death in the accident. I was right at the door. And who knows how I got through it, a high tech miracle in the hospital or -
MS. LARSEN: It wasn't the time.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Or it wasn't the time or - you know, there are all kinds of stories. And I'm convinced that there are forces at work that, though invisible, have a great deal of influence on one's life provided one takes one's shoes off and shuts up. You can hear certain things and feel certain things. So I was helped through that rough period. That will be a book I'll write about and give some interesting details about that process. But that was a life-threatening - I was right on the door. I could have just as well have gone through the door of death as come back this way and take up life again. The important thing was the fulcrum was death. And the dream world, which is stuff that rises up from inside, was informing -
[END TAPE 4 SIDE B]
MS. LARSEN: So you were talking about -
MR. CAPONIGRO: Well, in the same way that I had to leave the West Coast school of photography and find my own way of injecting the mystical element into the photographs, as I saw Morris Graves doing through his paintings, when I left Connecticut I needed to make the same kind of separation from the gallery world and the university world, which was going really hot on instituting photo programs, and away from the whole thrust of, hey, you know, we're finally accepted as an art form and we're going to take advantage of it, and we've got to show them and we've got to - you know, and I thought, oh, no, no, no. Lana Jacoby, a wonderful old German woman, a very good photographer - she's not that well known, but she is - people know who she is.
MS. LARSEN: Yes.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And we used to visit with her. And she was watching me, and she'd say, "Gee, that was a nice lecture you gave at the so-and-so. It was a nice piece that you wrote for the so-and-so. But remember, Paul, who you are. You're a photographer." She was right. And I did get caught up, and I could be sapped of a lot of energy by these various structures.
MS. LARSEN: And students.
MR. CAPONIGRO: And students as a participator in the world of photography [inaudible]. But boy, I needed that break, not only to try to save my marriage, which who knows what the result of that was, to go through all that. But to find a new space in which to investigate and be subjected to this next mention, this level of -
MS. LARSEN: Sometimes it's hard to say no about things, and sometimes it's almost as though like driving almost across the country was a way of saying no without having to individually say no.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. That's true. Yes. Certain types especially, it's extremely difficult to say no.
MS. LARSEN: That's a way of saying yes to yourself and no to some of these other people.
MR. CAPONIGRO: What is?
MS. LARSEN: That break. That moving away. That yes, what you're doing is very important.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. And at the same time, there are some out there who are sharing what you wish to preserve. You find a sensitive spot in another, you want to encourage that, because in a way it's reciprocal.
MS. LARSEN: Sure.
MR. CAPONIGRO: You know, you're really able to kind of tell it or give it from the present functions. Someone is going to actually receive it and use it. What happened in the last ten years in the world of photo workshops, you were lucky if you had one out of fifteen that you could relate to in that way. It's just a lot of people that wanted to be creative on weekends, and there really wasn't much fertile ground in all of that activity. Photography workshops became and have become big business for a lot of people. So I had to slow down not only because of my age and a couple of bad accidents, but primarily for keeping the right kind of energy to myself in order to continue with the perceptions that I can make in my photography.
MS. LARSEN: This is the same exact thing I heard from Richard [inaudible].
MR. CAPONIGRO: Really?
MS. LARSEN: Almost to the word. But it's certainly the same thought. He had been a professor at UCLA. He had cut back to part-time. They didn't want him to. Finally he had to say no to save the creative years he had. You know, he just knew that he'd been given a chunk of time. You brought yourself to this point where you're able to go from thought to deed. And you ought to do that every day. And that's where the magic is. All the rest is all the rest, and it's nice to be wanted. It's nice to be admired, and all this kind of stuff, which amply - you know, it was the same thing. He was amply admired, amply wanted. But the private time was so precious.
MR. CAPONIGRO: Yes. I'm in the process of looking at 40 years in work or more and place it. Now, there are an endless number of museums, universities, that maintain archives, collections, photographs. They'd love to have it. Not a one of them will buy a photograph [inaudible]. I need to turn over what I have done, or at least a portion of it, and get something in return to allow me to continue working.
MS. LARSEN: Just a collectors do. Like there have been collectors who have bodies of work, collections, and have received a certain sum, far less than the worth of the total -
MR. CAPONIGRO: The collectors can sell all that material and either take a huge write-off for the full value, but the photographer can't. The photographer is -
MS. LARSEN: That's that lousy tax law.
MR. CAPONIGRO: It's allowed - they're allowed to give you materials. And then -
MS. LARSEN: Thank you, Richard Nixon. That happened under the Nixon administration.
MR. CAPONIGRO: [Laughs.] Well, whatever that's all about, I can see that the major archives are still generating millions of dollars to build new spaces, and still cannot, cannot, find money to buy some photographs from the artist to help them buy a fresh box of film and paper. I'm not going to just leave it to the tax law that Nixon instituted. Their attitude is these people are going to die. They're going to worry about their estate taxes and how it's going to affect their kin. So if they turn it over to us and we have the legal papers and so forth, we don't have to pay anything. Well, I want to live for 25 more years and I want to work for 25 more years. And I don't want to be torn apart by workshops and galleries, and they're taking 50 percent of it all. I should be able to turn this thing over -
MS. LARSEN: Yes. And it's scattered to the four winds, too. It's just [inaudible].
MR. CAPONIGRO: Put it somewhere where they can give me something in return to start over again.
MS. LARSEN: I think of the - for example, there was a collector who became [inaudible]. He collected American folk art. He was brilliant. He was a brilliant collector. Eccentric man. He assembled a collection which was so brilliant [inaudible] out of really just trust fund little bits. But he sold his collection to the National Museum of American Art for a million dollars. But he sold something like 40 or 50 pieces, a certain number of things from his collection, for that million dollars. And he really gave them the prime and best things. It ended up that in total, what they got was almost a thousand pieces, and they paid a million dollars. So they paid an average of a thousand dollars a piece for these things. But when he died, he left them the rest of the collection. But with the million dollars, he was able to live okay, you know, the interest off that; to keep on collecting, which he couldn't afford to do. He was crammed with things. It was the love of the chase that he loved, not the keeping of it. He added to the collection with the million dollars. I mean, they had the best collector in the country out collecting for them using their stake because he ended up leaving all the rest to them. And alas, he passed away not long ago. But they ended up with this collection that - you know, they had the best curator in the world [inaudible]. And the Vogels did the same thing, Dorothy and Herbert Vogel, gifted collectors, with the National Gallery. And I don't know what they [inaudible]. But they're still alive, and they're doing well. The National Gallery has the collection. They are still collecting. And I bet they left the rest of it to them. So there are collectors who can manage this. I don't know about artists.
MR. CAPONIGRO: What about the artist? Where are the energies of the day? Where are they? And these museums and these universities and these other institutions constantly are constantly calling the photographers to donate prints for the auction to pay their mortgage or to pay their [inaudible] or to - what is it? Why can't the artist get some support? It is so visible. It's done out there.
MS. LARSEN: I could tell you from a curator's point of view, too, which is another story. I was at a meeting of -
[END TAPE 5 SIDE A]
MS. LARSEN: Let's see. We had talked about your trip to Ireland and Stonehenge. And as you were talking about, just as you got to Santa Fe, things in your life changed and you had some upheavals. And I think we were just about to get to your settling into Santa Fe and the positive and creative and constructive things that might have happened after that transition time. I was kind of wondering what the Santa Fe community was like that you found there. Looking at it from the outside, I think of people like Georgia O'Keefe was there, and wasn't Ansel Adams there visiting some of the time? Or was that before?
MR. CAPONIGRO: There was a whole period before. And little if anything of that remained other than seeing some of the work, going to the bookstores and finding the books by the - who was the well-known author that -
MS. LARSEN: Was it Beaumont Newhall?MR. CAPONIGRO: No. A writer. He hung out with that crew, Georgia O'Keefe, and Ansel would come through. Paul Strand would come through and his wife. And the Weston boys would go there. There