On Saturday afternoon in Bilbao when the temperature was in a comfortable 60’s, the area around its most famous attraction – the Guggenheim Museum – was filled with tourists and passersby. Everyone wanted to get underneath the famous giant spider and pose for a shot, which is what I would do to if I was merely there as a tourist. Also, every few minutes, the small pool in front of the museum would generate a mist, sort of part of the attraction, and that would make the tiles near the spider wet and create a good reflection. I wanted to take a shot of that reflection, but there were just too many people in that area. I quickly figured this was one of the days when you just had to work around what you have, photographically speaking. And in the late afternoon when it was still too early for at least a 30-second exposure, I tried the shot with an ND110, and that seemed to work like a charm. […Wait, more photos here!]
Maman – the famous giant spider of Guggenheim Museum, was my favorite subject while I was in Bilbao. I was immediately amused and intrigued by her. This creation by French artist Louise Bourgeois was inspired by emotions from her childhood, particularly by her mother who she had deemed as her protector.
Bourgeois has once explained:
“The Spider is an ode to my mother. She was my best friend. Like a spider, my mother was a weaver. My family was in the business of tapestry restoration, and my mother was in charge of the workshop. Like spiders, my mother was very clever. Spiders are friendly presences that eat mosquitoes. We know that mosquitoes spread diseases and are therefore unwanted. So, spiders are helpful and protective, just like my mother.”
This is how I’ve captured Maman at different times of the day, from sunrise to nightfall. […See photos here!]