I believe I enjoy publishing Witold Riedel’s “Bear” galleries here on TMN more than any other series of photos we run. If you’re new to the bear, I recommend digging back into previous iterations, like “The Bear,” “The Bear Goes to Paris,” or “The Bear in Helsinki.”

I met the bear in person once, at a dive bar in Greenwich Village. He was traveling with Witold that evening as he often does (but not always), and up close he embodied the same melancholic fortitude we get from the pictures—a little Germanic and perhaps too tall, but not someone who’s put-off by the world. More of a stiff spine in the face of the strange, the big, and the imposing. A traveler like the rest of us, moving through forests and museums and on planes, and one just as easily awed.

While putting this series together, Witold wrote me: “Many of the pictures have some hidden inside humor in them. But overall this ‘series’ is a bit more calm and melancholic than the previous ones? Maybe?”

We discussed that perhaps in this batch the bear is on more of a quest—for himself, for what is real. But perhaps that’s saying too much. Much better to leave it up to you, the reader and viewer, to see what the bear says to you.

TMN Contributing Artist Witold Riedel is a draftsman, photographer, and writer who explores the often-unfamiliar corners of the seemingly familiar universe. He was born in Poland, lived in Germany (in the city where the Grimm Brothers were born, actually) for many years, yet is a New Yorker by choice. He recently moved to Brooklyn. (He carries the bear with him most of the time, though not always.)


Rosecrans Baldwin co-founded TMN with publisher Andrew Womack in 1999. His latest book is Everything Now: Lessons From the City-State of Los Angeles. More information can be found at More by Rosecrans Baldwin