Manfredi magic photographs in Brooklyn art gallery.
At a small, storefront art gallery in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint section, a neighborhood where old traditions rub shoulders with young artists, there is currently a display, “A Program of Modern Mysteries,” featuring the paintings of Jeff Caramagna and the photographs of his grandfather, Arthur Manfredi. Some in magic may have known Arthur Manfredi from Tannen’s Magic Jubilee, where he was the official photographer. Others may be more familiar with his photographic work rather than his name as it was Manfredi who took the photos for the Slydini books (Best of Slydini and More and The Magical World Of Slydini) as well as those in the later New Stars of Magic series.
It was Caramangas’ idea to hang a show of his modern paintings interspersed with large reproductions of his late grandfathers photographs. He credits Manfredi as the inspiration of the exhibition. Caramanga has, “created paintings that invoke visual magic by controlling information and creating illusion much in the way magic is performed.”
Manfredi images on display include black and white photographs of The Amazing Randi, Max Londono, Sylvan, and Father Cyprian. Other photos recall unknown magi in a variety of moments in the act of conjuration. Attentive audiences, good humored volunteers and a rather large rabbit held by a man standing on a table, are also depicted.
The exhibit runs through April 15 at Bellwether, 150 Franklin Street, Brooklyn, N.Y., Saturday and Sunday from 12-6 p.m., weekdays by appointment. For more information or an appointment phone: 718- 389-3213.
—Richard Steven Cohn
Richard Steven Cohn has written for Genii, Magicol, M.U.M., The Yankee Collector, MAGIC, as well as magic themed articles for Brooklyn Bridge Magazine and Stagebill. He is a magical consultant for television and theater and performs both as a single and with his wife Alexandra.