Press-Republican

Out & About

July 18, 2013

Old friends make new art

PLATTSBURGH — “Pull Over” is the photographic and poetic fusion of Barry Lobdell and Michael Tucker.

An artists’ reception is today in the Hale-Water Gallery located in the Plattsburgh Public Library. The exhibit is part of the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts’ “Off-Site” gallery program. 

“Michael and I have been friends for over 40 years,” said Lobdell, a self-taught photographer who lives in Saranac Lake.

“We met each other when we were first working at a place south of Albany. He was a social worker at that point, and I was doing audio-visual work. We found ourselves in the same place and became friends. I taught him how to play chess. Soon, he was beating me all the time.”

Their families socialized together, and Lobdell has photographed Tucker and his family over the years.

“We haven’t seen each other all that much,” Lobdell said. “Distance and time separates people. He lives down in Latham, near Albany. He called me last summer and said he’s been writing poetry, and this is something I didn’t know.”

Tucker has written poetry for a decade and wanted Lobdell to provide images for a book he wanted to do.

“I thought that was a great idea,” Lobdell said. “Why don’t we get together and talk about it and see what we could come up with? He came up to my place a couple of times and went through my files of photographs.”

Tucker was looking for associations with his poetry.

“We found some things that worked together,” Lobdell said. “We talked off and on about that the last several months of the year. Meanwhile, I had been dealing with the folks at the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts about having an exhibition of my photographs. I was planning on putting on some of my Adirondack work. I had a thought, ‘Gee, why don’t we try an exhibit of my photographs with Michael’s poetry?’”

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