The Long Way Home


Homestead/Smokestack

 

From Homestead/Smokestack. Text, image and sound collaboration with Jeff.

From Homestead/Smokestack

In summer of 2013, Jeff and I collaborated on a project documenting cities through text, image, and sound. I knew right away I wanted to photograph Homestead, the town right outside city limits, where my young parents chose to start their lives together in the early 70s. I have vague memories of the house on E. 9th: what little I remember is fueled by my mother’s stories and a box of photographs. I used expired Polaroid film to show the types of found family photos in my collection. I shot one set and they didn’t turn out as planned, then went back a few months later to reshoot, happier with the last images. That August day was oppressively hot, and as we lurked through alleyways, batting away tiny gnats that flew into my camera lens, I found it comforting and strange how much everything looked the same. In between photo visits, I spent weeks writing a 750-word essay paragraph by paragraph. It is about my parents and what they gave to me, and what I have left: fragments of personal history. Throughout that summer, Jeff spent time in the studio, rearranging photos on the floor while playing the guitar. He recorded what he heard walking Homestead streets. He wrote down the sounds that he loved, then attempted to recreate them at home through samples and make-shift instruments. He asked me questions about what the inside of my first home looked like then and imagined what it looked like today. He listened.

(Text, images and sound: Contraphonic Sound Series.)

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10 Comments so far
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This is beautiful!

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Comment by Jes

Aw, thank you so much Jes – that’s super sweet of you to check it out! x

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Comment by Lisa

just great–what a collaboration!

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Comment by mww1818

thanks, michael!

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Comment by Lisa

…what a beautiful project dear Lisa!!…

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Comment by karijeppesen

thank you so much, kari!

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Comment by Lisa

Bring it on!

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Comment by Jeff

tonight – almost here!

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Comment by Lisa

I can’t wait to see your exhibit. I spent the better part of my youth in Homestead (elementary school). Time and that place seemed to stand still. I feel your nostalgia.

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Comment by motherblue212

thanks so much! it’s interesting for me now to look at this project since we did this a few years ago. i’m seeing it with fresh eyes.

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Comment by Lisa




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