Week 8: Trio crime


One is single. Two is a couple. Three is a sparkle.

I was attracted by two pictures of 3some.

Lewis Hine was a photojournalist in the early 1900s. The title of this b/w gelatin silver print explains when, where, who, what: “11:00 A.M. Monday, May 9th, 1910. Newsies at Skeeter’s Branch, Jefferson near Franklin. They were all smoking. Location: St. Louis, Missouri.” But why? Though it wasn’t mentioned in the title, MET website supplements:

In 1908 Lewis Hine accepted a position as chief investigator and photographer for the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC), a private organization founded in 1904 to promote legislation to protect children from exploitation by American industry… During the sixteen years that Hine worked for the NCLC (often posing as an insurance inspector to gain access to the worksite), he made some five thousand photographs of children at work in mines, farms, canneries, sweatshops, and the street.

Three boys supposedly at their boyhood behaved like men sucking puff heavily during their work break. Don’t be surprised – Hine was just reflecting the truth we were reluctant to know a hundred years ago. And the world doesn’t change a bit. Juvenile delinquency is a universal topic across times, only that we are dealing with drug abuse, compensated dating and cybercrime. On the other hand, teenagers are getting more involved in nativist activities. Are they any closer to angels? Hong Kong government don’t think so. Police has just released a new guideline to “enforce laws governing public order ‘more strictly’ to prevent any ‘suspicious’ gathering of at least three people from turning into a protest.” (SCMP, March 19, 2015)

In Fortissimo, there are three otherworldly angels amid rocky cliff. Fortissimo meaning very loud, abbreviated as ff in music language, pairs with Pianissimo meaning soft and quiet, abbreviated as pp, to become a pair of lacquered screens custome made for the music room of Solomon R. Guggenheim’s residence. When one angel is quiet, three are loud. The Cantonese saying “three women make a crowd” may hold true that they may be too loud and too suspicious. Ladies, be careful when you shop for lipsticks in Central, Mong Kok or Sheung Shui with your best mates – be pianissimo to make yourselves less suspicious.


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P.S. I was one month behind 😥


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