04 January 2012

Brawling Houses and Trees

Both Images: New Orleans, 2005 © Katherine Wolkoff.

I've been asked to write an essay on politics and photographic depictions of post-Katrina New Orleans. There obviously is a pretty rich trove of photojournalism available. But I hope to avoid it. Instead I plan to pursue the work by photographers "art" like Chris Jordan, Larry Towell, Robert Polidori and Richard Misrach. My plan generally is to talk about the politics of landscape and rely on the typically depopulated scenes that all of these photographers produced.

In any case, I've started to collect materials for the essay and came across work by Katherine Wolkoff that I had not recalled. Although it is quite good I'm not going to say much about it here. But I wanted to contrast two of her images of collision because they suggest a certain madcap brawl between uprooted trees and houses departed from their foundations. There are bits of macabre humor in these depictions of disaster.

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