#58—Snow on Snow

The snowing in photographs and in films (the snow falling on the Kremlin in Warren Beatty’s Reds and out a Kremlin window in Ernst Lubitsch’s Ninotchka and the benediction snowfall that signals a return to normal in Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life) seems infinitely more touching and more fraught with meaning than the snow that piles up in real life/  Photographic snows and filmic snows, are deliberate, artificial and controlled.  Everyday snow is just weather. My favourite piece of snow-art is Marcel Duchamp’s suspended standard-issue snow shovel that he titled In Advance of the Broken Arm (1915, remade 1964). “The” broken arm, notice.  Not “a” broken arm.  There was an inevitability about the employment of this shovel.