In a 1994 lecture on Meditation and Poetics, Beat poet Allen Ginsberg said:
“Shakespeare suggests that, as Buddha does, the interesting thing to discover is that consciousness is discontinuous. It’s not a continuous stream of consciousness where one thought follows another thought. There’s a gap in between and we really don’t know where the thoughts come from or how they link… so we have the notion of Surprise Mind, because we never know what we’ll be thinking in one minute. It will rise on its own so the mind is a complete surprise… You don’t have to go further in order to create a work of art.”
I believe it is in this vein of open-minded creativity that photographer Harvey Benge has captured images from his world travels, juxtaposed them in a delightful discontinuous sequence, and created his latest book for readers to ponder and enjoy.
“Killing Time in Paradise” is a poetic book composed of all photos and no text other than its koan-like title. People who “kill time” flipping back and forth through the pages will be rewarded perhaps with playful new connections and lingering meditations.
The first-level subject matter is a look at contemporary urban social landscapes through the lens of a single thoughtful photographer. Beyond the individual photographs, however, one discovers the often-surprising humor of unexpected juxtapositions and a unique voice in visual language.
This small volume is part of that wonderfully growing genre of affordable, limited-edition artists' books. 96 pages, all color, published by Schaden.
— Jim Casper, 2005