The Michael Jackson of the High Museum

A few days ago I took my son to the High Museum. Now that I bought him a camera for Christmas,  he wanted to go and take pictures instead of keeping his nose in his iPad (but he did have his iPad with him). I only had a few days until the Edward Weston exhibition left Atlanta and my son had one more day until he had to go back to school. So, off to Atlanta we went!

After getting lost and eating lunch, we parked and went inside. Mo Willems had an exhibit as well that my son was looking forward to. When I got to the Weston exhibit, there was this boisterous man talking to anyone that would listen to him. So then it was my turn to hear his mouth. He talked to my son and said he’s gonna be a photographer!  I smiled politely. He told me that he had taken pictures of the high museum. I asked him who he was. He said, “It doesn’t matter who I am!” He preceded to tell me that I can Google him. I told him I couldn’t Google him if I didn’t know his name. He told my son to write down his name: Ilia Varcev.

Now I had to wait until I got home to Google him. On the way home, I thought how  he got on my nerves. He was way too chatty for me and I wanted to see his work in peace, but he kept on talking to me. I told my son to look at the art work and not at him so he would stop talking to us. I just kept smiling at him to be polite. I guess my smiling got to him cause he said to me, you must be smoking something, cause all I did was smile at him. That comment got me mad. I told him he was smoking something. And then he told me again, I was smoking something. On that note, it was time to go ’cause I don’t know what would have came out of my mouth next.

Me and Varcev













I found out that Varcev had photographs at the High and Hartsfield Jackson Airport. He’s had a lot of shows around Atlanta too. He’s a self taught photographer and he has COPD among other sicknesses. He left Bulgaria when he was young because of the war. When he came to the US he started taking pictures and people liked them and wanted to buy them. So that’s how he made his living.

I found him to be very sassy and persuasive so I can see how he got people to help him get certain photo shots like this one:










The Michael Jackson of the High Museum

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