Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Burning House

I was so inspired by Foster Huntington's website The Burning House, where people submit photographs of prized possessions that they would save were their house to be engulfed by flames, that I decided to go about my room and see what I would want beside me on the lawn as I watch my house go up in smoke. It's such a neat concept and it was refreshing and fascinating to see this idea realized on a universal scale with entries from all over the world. Each entry was touching and deeply revealing about their submitter.

Before having discovered this website, I had many times wondered as I was in bed or in the car what I would save if I only had a few minutes to collect my things before it was too late. It made me think of vanitas still-lifes and the uselessness of the things I had accumulated in my room, things of little necessity and yet which each mean something to me and the life I have created for myself. To think that in a moment, it could all be destroyed. However, there are a few irreplaceable items in my room that are of absolute importance to me--that I would risk my life to save. Of course, I would save my family and Gia first and foremost, but let's say they could save themselves. What then would I rush around dumping into a blanket?

-Gia, my Chihuahua 
-painting of Glenn Gould that I made in high school
-box that my best friend in high school made for my eighteenth birthday with Colin Firth drawn on the lid and which is filled with all the letters, cards, and notes I've ever received
-notebook that I bought at the National Gallery of Art, D.C. and all my writings
-photo of me as a toddler with my dad at a Redskins game
-metal seal that I bought in Dresden when I was studying there and with which I seal all my letters
-vintage Art Nouveau tin candy box made for Huyler's New York filled with my jewelry
-my passport
-Tiffany & Co. earrings from Madrid that my dad gave me as a present
-matryoshka doll that my mother bought for me when we went to St. Petersburg together
-berry crown that makes me feel like a nymph
-copy of Andromaque by Racine which a friend gave me
-Edwardian-style lace-up boots that I wore whenever I went partying with my friends in London
-(not pictured) DVD of "Die Träumerei," a film I directed as an undergraduate starring my friends

1 comment:

  1. What an interesting blog post! I'll have to think about what I would save...maybe I'll write my own entry about it!