Documentary:•american dream•pillow of steel
American Dream Includes photos I made for myself and many I made to illustrate books on urban and suburban development.
In accommodating almost all our built environment to automobile use, we have surrounded ourselves with bleakness and distance--gated uncommunities; vast gray sprawls of asphalt; thundering roads dividing our neighborhoods from each other and our souls from ourselves. We have made a life that consists of moving from cage to cage in little wheeled cages, and we have lost much by it. This series simply looks at what we have done.
Fundamental Humanity is a series of nudes that I photographed in a burned-out powerhouse in an otherwise sylvan canyon northwest of Los Angeles.
I used ordinary people from all walks of life--photographers, musicians, academics, workers--specifically because they would not be entirely comfortable with public nudity. My hope was to contrast what we are as organic entities with the hard, often sterile, and sometimes shabby environments we have built for ourselves.
I was surprised that nearly everyone whom I asked to pose agreed to do so and understood what I was trying to express.
Names of the Night comprises photographs taken on my night walks in Los Angeles and other places.
I love the night, the poetry of light and shade, of window and world...of the unfelt barriers of darkness which we pierce without touching. I walk under any weather, usually alone, sometimes with the camera. For my own pleasure, and nothing else: to see, to hear the voices and straying music and other sounds, to smell the perfumes of hidden cooking and invisible flowers...going someplace or going no place, I walk the night.
Though I began taking the camera on my night walks almost the first week I had a camera, these are images I have made since the year 2000.
Pillow of SteelA few years ago I set out to photograph in a couple of Southern California railyards I had chanced upon. I was surprised to find hoboes there, not the weekend refugees from effete office culture that infested the rails later, but migrant workers, economic refugees from a recent industrial crash, and old-fashioned gentlemen (and a couple of ladies) of the road.
I visited them all over Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties for several months, made a few friends, and took these pictures.