This blog began as ORBIS, as a repository of musings by a graduate student, a Filipino just relocated to the United States. The name was derived from a short story by Jorge Luis Borges about a fictitious planet built by anonymous men. It resembled, not so much a real planet, but a self-consistent body of knowledge that constitutes a fictive world. It resembled, in fact, cyberspace itself, a labyrinthine world interconnected by hyperlinks.

The site was first revamped as The Flâneur’s Arcade to move away from the hermeticism inspired by Borges, to the more meandering, open-ended stance of the Baudelairean urban flâneur. The format was streamlined to encourage more writing and reading.

A couple of years later, I was posting more photography than text, starting with an iPhone snapshot taken from a hotel window in Tucson, Arizona that I thought exemplified good flâneur photography. This was how the site eventually became more of a photoblog. Here I elaborate on this emerging project, its photographic ethic and aesthetic.

The site is once again revamped, fortuitously, on the day of a solar eclipse. Eclipses, after all, are occasions of tumult, of pandemonia and hullabaloos. To keep things even and consistent, I removed (or kept private) all the more text-based posts, and further on retain this site exclusively for photoblogging. What has been omitted, however, will hopefully resurface in a somewhat different form on a new site called The Pointed Nib, which indeed will be for such musings.

Hence, The Flâneur’s Arcade will truly be an arcade, that is, a gallery of visual bric-à-brac from one who saunters in the world.

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