Medium: Photo Installation (27 images and 7 texts)
Dimensions: 20cm x 30cm
This series portrays a recent housing development in the "Exurbia" of Oklahoma City. The "Exurbia" are the new American suburbs, suburbs that extend beyond the suburbs, the city that expands relentlessly. The choice to photograph Oklahoma City is a not random one. During the Great Depression there was a huge wave of internal migration from the Great Plains to California. These migrants were labelled "Okies" because a large part of them came from Oklahoma, a state particularly affected by the crisis.
The work consists of images of all the houses in the development as well as images of the surrounding area in order to place Exurbia in its context. The houses are all pristine upper middle class homes. They give the impression that they are built to last forever. However, the region is in fact known for its impermanence, visited frequently by tornadoes and brush fires. In addition, the development does not appear to be in a city: other than a lone farm house, there is nothing to be seen in the surrounding area. The housing development in question has an added particularity: According to the developer, each house was built around the theme of a Hollywood movie. So the title of each image is the film that it corresponds to.
American photography has a long history of portraying various aspects of its cities from photographers like Walker Evans during the depression to conceptual work by Dan Graham like Homes for America. Once again, the US is wrought by an economic crisis, an appropriate moment once again to reflect on the American city.
Sound of Music
My Fair Lady
Romeo and Juliet
Gone with the Wind
Singing in the Rain
Wizard of Oz
Room with a View
Breakfast at Tiffany's
On Golden Pond
Essai(y), Magazzini del Sale, Venice, Italy, June 2012
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