Artist Statement – The American Landscape
At the beginning of 2016 I decided to expand the scope of my preferred subject matter—historic downtowns, 19th Century Houses and architectural landscapes—to focus on the more widespread and unnoticed aspects of the American Landscape.
My first photographs for the project showed darker images and I wanted to continue in that direction. In truth, though, I go wherever my eye and inclination take me. I know what I like and I set out to photograph it. Some of these pictures are dark and brooding, and yet others have a lighter feel. I suppose it depends on my mood on a particular day but in general I’m not a nihilist nor do I see the world in a dark and disturbed way. Quite the opposite, actually. Of course, the camera will sometimes show me something unexpected, or I'll get some feedback that alerts me to other aspects of my pictures that inspire me to explore further...and it's intriguing to follow those paths. But here I seem to be creating the images I have in my mind.
While editing the current body of work I started to notice that the pictures work best in groups so I divided them into several sub series that can also stand on their own under the American Landscape project name: Abandoned Industrial Spaces, Bethlehem Steel, Asbury Park, Traditional Landscapes, 19th Century Houses, Historic Railroads and Abandoned Highways. These are the things I'm compelled to photograph and so that is the direction for this phase of the project.
BETHLEHEM STEEL ARTIST STATEMENT
As a sub-series of The American Landscape, these pictures look at the remains of this huge steel plant that helped build and defend our nation. The exploration and photography is also a way for me to connect with and process the memory of my father and Lehigh University, where he attended engineering school. Dad loved Lehigh and its presence was central to his life and our family. There’s a strong connection between the plant and Lehigh’s engineering history, and by way of that, with my father’s memory. That is what I’m exploring and attempting to visualize in these pictures.
Please see the galleries under the Fine Art menu above.