Empty Space

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (24mm, f/5.6, 1/50 sec, ISO200)

The reason why we stayed in Poughkeepsie was because it’s close to New York City so that we could return the car in time the next day.

But we also stayed there because it was almost impossible to find a reasonable priced hotel in the touristic spots. But even Poughkeepsie or the nearby Beacon was busy on this sunny Sunday end of September. Even the Dia:Beacon was busy but the building is huge and it was not difficult to avoid people in the images if I wanted to do so.

I never heard about this museum before and to be honest I’m usually not that eager to visit a museum on a sunny day when on vacation. Simply because a museum is something for a rainy day but mostly because I live just outside of Vienna and if there is one thing we have in Vienna it’s museums.

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (12mm, f/5.6, 1/220 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/5.6, 1/105 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/5.6, 1/20 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (13.2mm, f/5.6, 1/55 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (12.6mm, f/5.6, 1/60 sec, ISO200)

But when I checked it out on the internet I understood that this museum is an excellent opportunity to take pictures in an old factory. I love to take pictures in old factories. This factory was built in 1929 by Nabisco (National biscuit company) and later became a carton factory before it was finally donated to the Dia Art foundation.

I can’t say how many art museums I have visited so far in my life but what I found out is that are two types:

There are the ones where amazing paintings of the old masters are on display in an old building like The National Gallery in London, The Louvre in Paris or The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam to name a few. But the number of paintings of the old masters is limited and therefore those museums are usually located in capital cities in Europe because the art has been collected by the kings of big empires.

The other type is a spectacular building filled with modern art or big installations. The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao is a good example. In those cases the building often is more impressive than the art that is on display. I have no problem with that. The opposite is true. For photography I clearly prefer this type.

The pictures above and below are good examples. I love the picture with the two black flat objects on the wall and the divan. They look like giant flat screen TV sets and I think it is fair to say that those items most likely wouldn’t work in your home as a piece of art but here they look great. Or the big holes in the floor in the images below. This art only works in this setup but here it works brilliantly.

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (13.8mm, f/6.4, 1/25 sec, ISO200)
 FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (13.8mm, f/6.4, 1/35 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (12mm, f/6.4, 1/50 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (50mm, f/4, 1/150 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (15.1mm, f/5, 1/20 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (13.2mm, f/5, 1/18 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (50mm, f/4, 1/90 sec, ISO200)

Before lunch I shot with my new Fuji X-H1 plus the XF 16-55/2.8 WR which is an excellent combo of course but now I wanted something wider and also smaller and lighter. So I choose to take my trusty X-Pro2 plus the XF 10-24/4 OIS and the XF 50/2 WR for the longer shots. This was also a test run because I planned to use this combo for the last days in New York City.

If you check out this blog you know that I prefer to shoot with my X-Pro2 with the 14/2.8, 23/2 and 35/1.4 when traveling light and in cities and that the 10-24 or the 16-55 is reserved for my main vacation and for landscape landscape photography. During my previous vacation in the USA I almost exclusively shot with the 16-55 and neglected the 10-24 simply because I don’t like to witch lenses all the time. Big mistake! The 16-55 of course is excellent but 16mm on APS-C is not exactly wide. In wide angle lenses every single mm of change in focal length makes a huge difference. To photograph wide spaces you need to have a super wide lens to give the viewer an impression of what you experienced.

The XF 50/2 WR I took for the shots where I wanted to compress the view like in the image above and below. I love the shot below. This is how nice some of the people are. When the guy recognised that I wanted to shoot the empty room he started to duck and run out of the picture. I guess he was afraid to ruin my shot but instead he made it.

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (50mm, f/2.8, 1/160 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (50mm, f/2, 1/80 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (50mm, f/2, 1/600 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (50mm, f/2, 1/320 sec, ISO200)

We were not sure what to do in this little town of Poughkeepsie in upstate NY. Maybe just to relax in a quieter place and to recharge before we re-enter New York City.

This vacation was very different to our previous ones in the USA. Before this trip we always went to the South West. And no matter if we started our road trip in San Francisco, Las Vegas or in Los Angeles they all were more or less the same. Breathtaking nature in the National Parks, piece and quiet in the deserts and lonely roads. We stayed in hotels in small towns and to park the car, no matter its size, was ever an issue.

This trip was very different. Much more urban, bigger cities, the focus shifted from nature to architecture. I would never say that the East of the USA is European because it is definitely not. It is still the USA and it fells like it but it’s not the great wide open that you experience in the West. We really missed those empty spaces. I’m really glad that I have seen the East and that I finally visited New York City. It was about time to do that.

But when when Corona is finally under control and international travel is possible again I’m sure that we will go West.

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (12.6mm, f/4.5, 1/17 sec, ISO200)