Decline

May 25, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Abandoned warehouse, Roslindale 2016

What am I looking at? It's the back end of an old warehouse, perhaps, sitting behind a restaurant's parking lot off a major street in Roslindale. Its windows are painted over or boarded up, ivy is growing, adding to the sense of forlorn decay. It's hard to know what's going on here, and maybe it's nothing more than a scene of inevitable urban decline. 

But let's explore that.

One might consider the possibility that its interior is expansive, filled with joyous details appreciated by whomever comes inside. How often have we learned that what we see on the outside has no bearing on what is within? (Why do I suspect that is more the case with people than with old buildings?). Yet it does seem a sensible stance - that aphorism about judging books and covers and all... What's to be lost by withholding judgment? Good point.

But I'm inclined to go that one better. When I let go of my ideas about what this place is - or was - and look with intuition and careful eyes, this scene has a balance and an elegance that belies its appearance of decrepitude. The interplay of the natural and human worlds is a gentle reminder of where I sit in this scene. The haphazard placement of elements reminds me that the natural world can be awfully messy, just like humanity. 

It tells a story, one that deepens the more I focus my attention on it. That's why I shoot.


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