Down in the Forest, We Sing a Chorus (2020-2021)
Weekend treks became our family ritual throughout the height of the pandemic. Hiking through the forests of upstate New York, we were in awe of what we saw: spider webs reinforced by wishbone-shaped tree trunks, rock servicing waterfall, and the humus of remnant stumps supplying nutrients for new growth. We discovered that decay and rebirth cycles manifested as formal and fluid. It was astounding to witness our vulnerability and interdependence reflected in the wonders of the natural world. This collective experience brought me to photograph my children for the first time.
"Down in the Forest, We Sing a Chorus" takes a close look at the forest ecosystem to appreciate its systems of reciprocity. These images of figure and nature emphasize interconnection, transformation, fragility, and hope. They consider the critical value of the environment, what we can learn from it, and how future generations depend on its existence. I use a camera system that combines a medium-format analog (film) lens on a digital camera back, and I do not make significant post-production alterations. The resulting photographs are intentional documents of a moment in time, place, and people they portray (i.e., pandemic years, the forests of upstate NY, and my growing children). Still, with lyrical and tight, intimate compositions (not expansive/wide-angle as is the norm with landscape photography), this work pushes the boundaries of the documentary form while directly addressing contemporary environmental concerns.
Living during a pandemic has taught us that we do not exist solely to benefit our individual lives. Instead, it has confirmed that we must consider our collective interdependence. "Down in the Forest, We Sing a Chorus" invites the viewer to look to the natural world to see how together we survive.
Down in the Forest, We Sing a Chorus includes 20 B&W photographs, printed on Archival Pigment Paper, ranging in size from 24x36" to 40x60."