My friends George Forss and Donna Wynbrandt had a reception for their brilliant work Sunday – he is a legendary photographer and she is a gifted outsider artist – at the Copper Trout Art Gallery in Jackson, N.Y. and Maria and I went to see them there and cheer them on. I am always privileged to take a photo of these two devoted lovers. Donna has a regal presence about her and George's live defines the drama and wonder of the genius.
But as much as I am drawn to their work – George's work will decorate my new study – I am equally drawn as a photographer to their great and timeless love for one another. Whenever I hear the story of George and Donna – he is one of the most celebrated urban landscape photographers in the world and she lived on the fringes of the urban world for some time before revealing her great gifts as an artist, both of them confronting and overcoming profound challenges of life, always coming together, always returning to their love, always working to create their art and bring it to the world. Their love suffuses their brilliant work.
It is such a compelling story, I never tire of hearing it and writing about it. In a sane world, I would get to write their book myself, but I do not think that is a possibility for me. But I hope to help them find a writer who can take on this great story and do justice to it. It is not really the kind of story commercial publishers seek out these days, for reasons I accept but do not quite understand. Maybe one will.
Their photos always speak to me of love, you can see it and touch it in the photographs, Donna always turning to George, George accepting this love and acceptance and trust and thus giving it back. They remind me that love is everything, it is the only thing, it is so often the lost thing, and these two loving spirits have found it and clung to it for dear life, lighting up their world and ours. They remind me of my own feeling for Maria, she just lights up my world, and I hope I do the same for her, even when we are tired, spent, confused. I see myself in them, I see the best of all of us in them.
Love is everything. It is the only thing.