564 miles per hour
swimming above Arizona
I Jet Smile Phosphorescent
Culver City, California, 2012.
I spent a year in Rome investigating how light is particular and unique to Rome. What I discovered is both obvious and banal; the "light" of a place is not only result of a geographic situation but is also intimately formed by the surrounding architecture and its urban setting. As Rome has so many periods of construction, it contains many different conditions of light: roman light; medieval light; renaissance light; baroque light; even fascist light. I took many photographs to fully appreciate this discovery, and it became more obvious after my time-lapse film studies, found elsewhere on this site. The figurative shadows are one of my favorite light conditions in Rome.
I visited Prague on the anniversary of its liberation by the Russians. The entire town was decorated with communist propaganda, and I quickly discerned that every manifestation of celebration was in fact viewed and resented by most citizens as symbols of the unwanted Soviet occupation. As a young western visitor I was struck by the mixture of traditional culture with simple graphic propaganda, the presence of the military on the streets, and the many references to warfare and arms. The area around the statue in Wenceslas Square where Jan Palach had set himself on fire was palpably tense. While the lack of commercial signage today seems refreshing, at the time it reinforced a general sense of dourness and economic austerity.
Boy Scout Jamboree in a forest near Heidelberg, Germany, 1973. This was one of the first times I used color film. The innocence of the boys and the event is complemented by the innocence of the 17 year old photographer, with my only photographic influences up to that point coming from Time, Life, Look and National Geographic.