Any Providence, R.I. Dopers with cameras willing to help me with something?

In Gardner-Jackson Park on South Main Street, there’s a 1985 welded steel sculpture by João Charters de Almeida. (There are apparently two war memorials in the same park – it’s neither of those.)

I’d really appreciate it if someone could shoot a picture of it for me, along with any identifying plaques etc., and email/snail mail them to me. I’ve got a web page about the artist, who also created a sculpture for the Montreal metro.

Thanks in advance!

I might be able to get down that way, maybe even this weekend. And I’ve got a good camera, but it’s not digital. If I can make it, do you prefer slides or prints?

Prints are fine. Bless your heart!

(Actually, if you can get your developer to burn them onto CD – a lot of places will do that now for film – that would be even better.)

And let me know what your costs are so I can reimburse you by PayPal.

Okay, so here’s the thing. A lot of public art, and this is the sort of thing that you never really notice until you’re specifically looking for it, a lot of art is not labeled. At all. It’ll be just this big, metal object in the middle of some vaguely park-like area. And I don’t know if you’ve heard, but metal is like a hugely popular medium for sculptures these days. You want two pieces of metal to stick together, you’re going to weld them.

I got down to Providence about 6:00, hoping to catch some good evening light. As soon as I got in the vicinity of South Main Street, there was a park right there, and a big-ass metal sculpture right at the corner of the park nearest me. Piece of cake, I figured. I parked. Walked up to the sculpture, and not too far away was another sculpture. Now I have a predicament. And to be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure this was even the right park. I walked around a bit. I found three war memorials, which didn’t quite match the description, but I figured it was a good sign, because if there was another park on South Main Street there weren’t really enough wars left over. I found plaques dedicating the park to Gardner and Jackson, so I was in the right place.

Nothing to do but take pictures of both sculptures. I had a 24-exposure roll of film, and I would have been a little hard pressed to shoot that many pictures of one sculpture anyway. I picked one, took about ten shots and then walked over to the other. Took a couple more pictures, and as I was framing the next one, I noticed something. “What’s that tall, black thing back there among the trees?”, I thought to myself. This one had a plaque, “Welded Iron Sculpture”, by Charters de Almeida. I finished the roll.

I hope the pictures come out. That park was in the shadows from some of the tall buildings downtown. I may head down again next weekend and try for some shots in morning light.

Thank you so much! I can’t wait to see them. This is above and beyond.

Hold off on that until we see if the pictures came out.

And it worked out okay for me, too. From the park I could see a boat going up the river and loading firewood into baskets that were a few feet above the water, about three-dozen of them. Someone told me it’s a big thing they do on weekends in the summer. Just after sunset, a boat goes along and lights them all on fire. I had my camera, lenses and tripod with me (forgot the cable release, though), so I hung around and took some night exposures of the fire on the water. I was totally guessing on exposures and settings, so I have no idea if those will come out at all. But taking timed shots like that is great because it doesn’t take so much attention that I can’t still enjoy being there.

Maybe it’s just the places people have gone, but burning the pictures onto a CD has brought less than spectacular results for me. Anytime anyone has submitted them for print, they’re just not print-worthy. I had the same problem with a roll I tried at CVS. The photo prints were fine but there was a ton of breakdown when they were transferred to disc. I ended up having to scan in the hard copies. Maybe Robot Arm (hey, how are ya? ) will have better luck, but just wanted to warn you in case this is a time-sensitive project.

I saw this too late to do the first round, but if Robot Arm’s photos don’t turn out well due to light conditions, I can grab a digital camera from work and get the pics for you.

Just let me know.

Oh, Robot Arm, what you saw is called WaterFire.

Okay, I work on South Main Street in Providence, Rhode Island. I can go take a picture with my phone at lunch today if you like. It’s right across the street I guess, although I’ve never heard it called Gardner-Jackson Park before and I’ve worked here for almost 8 years. Where am I sending it?

Oh, rats, I see someone beat me to it. I was out of the office on Friday. But, hey, I learned that the park across the street has a name.

matt_mcl, I e-mailed them last night to the address in your profile. Did you get them?