Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Bella Gad, in Memory

Bella Gad was my grandmother’s cousin (or at least that’s as close as I’ll get to being precise about family relationships). This isn’t the place in which to paint a portrait of her even if I thought I could. I will say, though, that Bella was a mixture of extremely strong—even when baseless—opinions, great humor, and tremendous affection. She also had a very good eye and an excellent artistic sense, and I was always very flattered that she was such an enthusiastic supporter of my photography—not just the photos of animals looking winsome, but those in which I tried to frame things differently, to focus on form or abstraction or try a new perspective.

Bella lived in Israel and, although she spoke several languages, didn’t speak English; she and I wrote to each other in mutually half-forgotten French, resorting regularly to the dictionary. Several times a year, I would send her an “album,” a collection of my photos with brief captions in my scant French.

I was only starting to think about which photos I would include in an album this fall when I learned that she had died last week. These are some of the photos I would have included in that album. I wish she could see them.

Tu me manques, Bella.

{A note: I do write all text and take all pictures. Please do not reproduce either without my permission.}


biobabbler said...

=( Tres triste. Mais, tres belle, aussi.

La grenouille est formidable, magique!

Avec plus profonde sympathie. xoxoxobb

Olivia V. Ambrogio said...

Thank you, biobabbler.

Kathleen Cunningham said...

I'm so sorry, Olivia. I had not heard of the loss of your cousin. Your tribute of beauty for Bella is indeed very sad, but very beautiful. She must have so enjoyed receiving your letters and photographs.

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