Since languages formed, we have been sharing stories. It reinforces memory, creates bonds, and promotes understanding. I have been hired to record oral histories and have sought them out for my own artwork. It is a gift and a pleasure to listen to others' life experiences.
THE WILD WILD WEST END
This project was originally developed from the fall of 1999 to the spring of 2000. Tenants of four warehouses in the West End of Atlanta, GA -- punks, artists, dreamers -- agreed to be photographed. In addition, I requested a quote to accompany their photograph. Their likeness, their musings, and the warehouse itself were the subject of a handmade book. It is coptic bond and filled with screenprinted collages from photographs of their living environs and silver gelatin prints of the tenants. All text was letter pressed with hand set type.
The current video oral histories offer a new perspective and documentation of this unique living experience. Whereas the book offers an artifact of Atlanta's DIY scene at the turn of the century, the oral histories offer the memory of a place and time in a subculture. If the book is the facts, the videos are the feeling. Former tenants tell stories, speak to the freedom felt, the friendships and bonds created, and share the grief of the tragic events that ultimately occurred there.
See more clips from the interviews here.
CROSSROADS ~ AN ORAL HISTORY
"Crossroads ~ An Oral History is a compilation of one-on-one interviews celebrating the musical and cultural legacy of Pittsburgh's Hill District during the golden era of Jazz. In addition to revered Hill District residents like centenarian Lillian Allen, legendary Pittsburgh musicians featured in the project include Roger Humphries, George “Duke” Spaulding, and Dr. Nelson Harrison. These elder statesmen and women share personal accounts, memories, and lively anecdotes that tell the story of one of Pittsburgh’s most historically significant neighborhoods." Yvonne McBride
Yvonne McBride, an award winning novelist, hired me to do the video production for this series of oral histories. She created the story and flow of the film. I did all camera work, lighting, audio, and post process work.
Crossroads ~ An Oral History (The Hill District)
HAIRY PEOPLE PROJECT
Hairy People Project is a collaborative project with artist, Amy Masters. HPP explores ideas about surveillance and collective fear of the unknown through the mythology of Bigfoot. Below is one excerpt from a series of recorded stories about Bigfoot sightings.