Collaborator Michael Zhang and I were scheduled to show our work Fragments at the Ruby at Duke University on March as soon as everything shut down due to the Coronavirus. Because of the abrupt nature of the situation, the work hasn’t quite been completed yet (it’s mostly complete, it just needed a few minor adjustments) and was unfortunately not displayed.
Fragments is a combination of photography/generative media work. Buildings started to fall and rise at a pace that left me unable to grasp a concrete sense of place in my new hometown of Durham, NC. Using Atget as a springboard – his sense of placemaking through walking in a rapidly changing 19th century Paris – I collected images as I explored walking routes where demolitions and active construction sites were situated. With a growing archive of images that correspond to specific walks, Michael and I then came up with a set of rules to subject the images to. In essence, each image becomes intermixed with other photographs made during the same day before fading into a different day in the same city. The continuous slippage, the avoidance of the fixed image is a nod to the idea that the idea of Durham as a place – as I experience it.