The construction site, characterized by ambiguity and openness, is the embodiment of GRAY SPACE. Situated between otherwise defined areas of the city, it bears witness to what was and what may be. I document a rite of passage; a temporary urbanscape which is no longer one thing but not quite another.
Plastic sheeting, installed to protect and manage detritus at construction sites, allows for a new photographic representation of the landscape. The sites' transitional nature, part material/part immaterial, is clearly rendered within the shadowy and blurred abstract photographs. I capture a state between destruction and new life.
Atlanta, a city that destroys to build anew, forces a continually reconsidered identity. Being surrounded by a shifting GRAY SPACE affects the psyche. GRAY SPACE encourages contemplation of both the physical and metaphysical transformation.
Our No Place
As a white woman born and raised in a predominately African-American community, I explore my transient cultural identity in and through photography. I make photographs of friends and family members in abandoned city lots.
Navigating between record and metaphor, these images of my personal landscape allow for an investigation of my surroundings, relationships and identity. The work teeters between document and myth. Neighbors stand among wildflowers and tall grass, yet bits of refuse are revealed in contrast to the green growth. Power lines and parked cars are stationed just beyond the people I capture on film. In response to our community becoming more and more forgotten (schools closing, streets in disrepair, and businesses abandoned), these photographs mark a territory and reclaim a space.
I use my camera to mark cultural boundaries and separations even as I seek to manipulate them. I travel the in-between space seeking to create images that prompt the stretching and cracking of this idea of racial identity to appear. I want to seduce the viewer with the formal elements of the image. It is important to me that the photographs are beautiful. But it is just as important that there is more to the image than the personal or the formal. The beauty is, rather, a starting point that then pushes out and calls for a deeper kind of analysis, wonder and questioning.
Using the camera as instigator, I work along the edges of the physical and psychological to mark city space and name urban place. My newest body of work specifically engages the Southeastern US landscape. As cities try to fill and reinvent themselves, there remain vacant lots and barren spaces throughout.
These “cleared” spaces are charged with emotion and carry great history.
I utilize various methods and materials to map Southern cities and illuminate empty lots. Diverse iterations and installations all tap into and reflect the blight and optimism neighborhoods attempt to navigate.
The Southeast is redefining the urbanscape. By exploring the land that stands and bears witness, we bring new awareness to place. My visual investigations grounded in a performative photographic practice play a constitutive role in this effort.
Old Fourth Ward, 2014, Archival pigment prints face-mounted to acrylic (Installation photograph at Bernard A. Zuckerman Museum of Art, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA)
Grant Park, 2014
Installation of Vacant Domain, Atlanta, GA
Inman Park, 2014
Old Fourth Ward, 2014, Archival pigment prints face-mounted to acrylic