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Thread: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

  1. #1
    Gustavo's Avatar
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    a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    me podiz ayudar con informacion?
    can you help me gather Information?

    Mr./Ms. <place last name here>
    Name of Organization
    Address


    Dear Mr./Ms. <place last name here>,

    I am a fine art photographer based in Los Angeles, California with a strong interest in depicting the artifacts and the daily lives of the Jewish people of Spain, both historical and current day. As such, I am in the preliminary stages of research for a fine art project in which I plan to depict historically and culturally significant sites related to Jewish life throughout Spain.

    To lay the groundwork for this project I am contacting various organizations, foundations, educational institutions, and private individuals who might have particular knowledge, expertise, and interest in my topic. I would greatly appreciate your assistance with my endeavor.

    I am looking for information on Synagogues, Jewish neighborhoods, cemeteries, stores, people and Historical sites.


    My photographs are made using large format cameras and film ( 8 X 10 and 5 X7 Inches).
    The prints are known as contact prints using historical methods.
    I will appreciate whatever information, recommendations you can provide me to
    further this project.
    As a reference I am listing some of the details as to how I make my prints.
    The film is black and white sheets of 8 X 10 and 5 X7 inches.
    A contact prints is made by direct contact with the light sensitized paper.
    The paper is watercolor cotton paper that is coated by hand using noble metals.
    Some of the techniques used are Platinotype, Cyanotype and Kallitype.
    I have shown my work at Local Venues, Santa Fe New Mexico and In ShangHai China.
    All additional Information about me can be found at www.gcastilla.com
    or you can feel free to request additional information

    Sincerely,


    Gustavo Castilla
    Gustavo Castilla Photography

    P.S.
    where to buy film places to spend a night or two
    Thank you
    We are not moved by things ,but by the views we take of them.
    Epictitus
    My Site

  2. #2

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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    I don't have any references for you, but I think that you could find out info here in LA, either through the Skirball center, the Jewish Federation, or any number of cultural organizations. Try the Spanish consulate as well.


    As an unasked for editing suggestion, I would be more summary with the tech details. Interesting as that is to you and me, it is perhaps better to state more simply that you will be using historical and traditional processes for the photography and printing, and give one or two examples. In such a prospective situation, people are usually more interested in what you plan on doing with the pictures than how you make them.


    Morrie Camhi did a beautiful project on Greek Jews in the 70's, I think, that I highly recommend.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Moderator
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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    To build on Claudio's point, you're asking people to share their lives with a stranger. So your introductory letter might be stronger if you say less about the technical means, and more about what motivates you to do the project and what you plan to do with the work.

  4. #4
    Scott Davis
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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    Gustavo- I can point you to two places to start with for the historical aspects - Toledo and Granada, both of which retain at least one synagogue (Toledo has two), dating back to before the reunification and the Inquisition of the RRCC. Google the synagogues in Toledo - they have an active support network both within and outside Spain, and may have some really good contacts for you.

    http://www.bh.org.il/Communities/Synagogue/Toledo.asp

    would be a good starting point. I would introduce yourself to them and explain in greater detail your affinity/association with their group, and your motivation for the project. If you have done a photo essay of this kind before, I would provide links and/or hardcopy to show them so that they can SEE the quality you're talking about- most of the technical details are completely lost on the vast majority of non-photographers, and will only make the reader smell bullshit where there may not be any.

  5. #5
    Gustavo's Avatar
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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    Thank you all
    As you may have notice writing is not a strong point .
    I will work on adding your concerns and points
    We are not moved by things ,but by the views we take of them.
    Epictitus
    My Site

  6. #6
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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    Scott's comment suggests a broader point. There's plenty you can learn on your own about the historical facts, culture, geography, etc., from studying the literature yourself. If you can show that you've done your homework, that you've already learned a great deal about the subject and are not asking people to give you information that is readily available, it will be more evidence that you are serious about what you are doing, and will show respect and courtesy for the people that you are asking for favors.

  7. #7
    Scott Davis
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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    Also search in your area for any organizations for Sephardic Jews (Jews of Spanish origin). I remember seeing something about there being a decent number of Sephardim in the US, and there may be a support and/or historical organization in or around Los Angeles. If you can make contact here, they will be a good source, and a much better reference for your future endeavors in Spain. The remaining Sephardim in Spain are a very tight-knit and insular community. If you get a reference from a relative, that will put you in much better stead than any letter you might send. From my memory of the exhibits at the Sephardi Museum in Toledo, the vast majority of surviving Sephardim are scattered to the four corners of the earth - although they maintain their own dialect, they have been out of Spain for over five hundred years, and many were lost to the Holocaust. The language is interesting, as it is a significant deviation from Hebrew, with many words absorbed from Spanish, five to seven hundred years ago. Kinda like Geoffrey Chaucer's English blending with high church Latin.

  8. #8
    Gustavo's Avatar
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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    one of the reasons I started the thread was the hope that perhaps some forum members living is Europe may know best about their communities
    We are not moved by things ,but by the views we take of them.
    Epictitus
    My Site

  9. #9

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    Re: a work in progress Jews in Spain your comments are most welcome

    Quote Originally Posted by Gustavo View Post
    me podiz ayudar con informacion?
    can you help me gather Information?

    Mr./Ms. <place last name here>
    Name of Organization
    Address


    Dear Mr./Ms. <place last name here>,

    I am a fine art photographer based in Los Angeles, California with a strong interest in depicting the artifacts and the daily lives of the Jewish people of Spain, both historical and current day. As such, I am in the preliminary stages of research for a fine art project in which I plan to depict historically and culturally significant sites related to Jewish life throughout Spain.

    To lay the groundwork for this project I am contacting various organizations, foundations, educational institutions, and private individuals who might have particular knowledge, expertise, and interest in my topic. I would greatly appreciate your assistance with my endeavor.

    I am looking for information on Synagogues, Jewish neighborhoods, cemeteries, stores, people and Historical sites.


    My photographs are made using large format cameras and film ( 8 X 10 and 5 X7 Inches).
    The prints are known as contact prints using historical methods.
    I will appreciate whatever information, recommendations you can provide me to
    further this project.
    As a reference I am listing some of the details as to how I make my prints.
    The film is black and white sheets of 8 X 10 and 5 X7 inches.
    A contact prints is made by direct contact with the light sensitized paper.
    The paper is watercolor cotton paper that is coated by hand using noble metals.
    Some of the techniques used are Platinotype, Cyanotype and Kallitype.
    I have shown my work at Local Venues, Santa Fe New Mexico and In ShangHai China.
    All additional Information about me can be found at www.gcastilla.com
    or you can feel free to request additional information

    Sincerely,


    Gustavo Castilla
    Gustavo Castilla Photography

    P.S.
    where to buy film places to spend a night or two
    Thank you
    Hola Gustavo.

    Yo vivo en Córdoba. En mi ciudad está uno de los barrios judios más importantes de España: la judería. Su sinagoga es, junto con la de Toledo, la más importante de España.

    Si necesitas más información, por favor, contacta conmigo: estaré encantado de ayudarte.

    Te paso algunos enlaces :




    Hello Gustavo.

    I live in Cordova. In my city there is one of the most important Jewish neighborhoods of Spain: the Jewry. His synagogue is, together with that of Toledo, the most important of Spain.

    If you need more information, please, contacts with me: I will be been charmed with of helping yourself.

    I pass some links to you:

    http://www.redjuderias.org/red/contacto.php?lang=1

    http://www.legadoandalusi.es/legado/...entos/1214.htm

    http://www.sitographics.com/expo/paseos/source/23.html

    http://www.artehistoria.jcyl.es/civi...entos/1214.htm

    http://www.arqueocordoba.com/visitas...-jud-sinag.htm

    http://www.ayuncordoba.es/portal/web...en.jsp?id=2610

    http://www.juderia.net/index.php?opt...id=23&Itemid=9


    Regards, Luis.

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