Stay Golden suggests ideas of the uncertainties and vulnerabilities of existing in the world through the direct and curious observation of our everyday environment. The title comes from some graffiti I came across referencing a quote from the novel The Outsiders. These images loosely depict everyday struggle and the desire to remain “golden” — innocent and pure in a world of insecurities.
The series is an ongoing photographic survey of everyday Americana: overlooked places, objects, buildings, vehicles and signage. They are mostly vacant, emptied spaces, void of people but reeking of human presence. I am fascinated by the decisions people make, why they make them and I enjoy the layering effect of these decisions over time and how they can transform common things. I love dry humor, playful relationships and quirky coincidences.
Photography describes more than can be explained. It forces attention, the need to look and look again. I want to be rewarded with surprise and a recharged awareness of my surroundings, enjoying the subtle mysteries and metaphors found in the commonplace.
— Martin Buday, Denver, Colorado, USA
Residential Facades focuses on the documentation of suburbia: overgrown and under-planned. These continuously replicated structures boast an overwhelming sense of the generic; the nature of which is an indicator of the death of the local. The result of which is the eventual decline of spatially-derived identity and the emergence of a generic suburban, or dare I say American, vernacular.
These unadorned “facades” act as a veil of wealth and stability. They hint at the American dream, which in light of current national fiscal status it seems we can no longer afford. The title itself confronts us with a convenient double entendre, one simultaneously describing the physical face of these homes (and in turn our neighborhoods and projected identities), and the illusion behind which lingers the fragility of a nation.
— Travis Shaffer, Lawrence, Kansas, USA
This series of photographs, titled Marginal, examines life on the fringes of Detroit, Chicago, and Gary, IN. These lonely, undeveloped places are populated by castoff belongings and people who have nowhere else to go. Though the people who pass through are never around for the picture, the evidence of their presence provides clues into deciphering their marginal existence.
— Jennifer Ray, Chicago, USA
In summer 2010, I started working on a new project titled City River. Its focus is on the river Isar on which the city of Munich, Germany is located. In former times, the river was of great economic importance for the city but today it serves as Munich’s largest area for recreation. Although the Isar was canalized and its banks were fixed in the 19th century, large sections of the river convey an impression of “wilderness” that is quite exceptional for an urban landscape. This is due to the particular geology of the Munich area as well as a public initiative to “re-naturalize” the Isar.
City River is an ongoing exploration of the meaning of wilderness in the context of an urban landscape that has been used and rebuilt for many centuries. I am interested in the intersection of nature and culture and how people experience it.
— Thomas Wieland, Munich, Germany