Due to a rapid population growth, historic buildings all over Portland are being demolished to make more room for the growing city. But these historic buildings and landmarks help give the city its’ character. That character is what helped portland gain it’s ‘odd-ball’ reputation. Are those days over? Is the city changing permanently? Caleb is a Portland native whose goal is to capture the character of old Portland and share it with us all
Point, click, shut! Camera stores are rapidly fading into obsolescence as smartphones take the place of mass market cameras, film and paid photo processing.
After having his heart broken while attending Tulane University, Frank Relle turned to his neighborhood of the Garden District in New Orleans to stroll and clear his head at night. Four years after graduating college, he once again turned to his hometown for comfort during hard times and decided to begin photographing the homes and scenes that he was turing to by creating long exposure nighttime photographs.
Oh dear. Do yourself a favor and head on over to Ben Marcin’s site and see his heart-breakingly beautiful photos. His work stops time.
One of the architectural quirks of certain cities on the eastern seaboard of the U.S. is the solo row house. Standing alone, in some of the worst neighborhoods, these nineteenth century structures were once attached to similar row houses that made up entire city blocks. Time and major demographic changes have resulted in the decay and demolition of many such blocks of row houses. Occasionally, one house is spared – literally cut off from its neighbors and left to the elements with whatever time it has left.
Jeremy Underwoods turned his disappointment into a thought-provoking art project by gathering up some of the trash and other detritus he discovered while exploring Houston. He then assembled and photographed funky land art sculptures, which he presents in series entitled Human Debris.
Jack Elementary School opened in 1942 and sat on a promontory above a city waste treatment plant that occasionally emited odors. It was also on Munjoy Hill, the poorest section of Portland, Maine.
Jack Elementary was Portland’s largest school until the time of its closure. The school made headlines when 100% of the teachers, administrators and other employees of the school reported symptoms related to mold poisoning from Stachybotrys chartarum. The mold can cause symptoms that are flu-like down up to pulmonary hemorrhage.
The school was closed in 2001 and then later torn down as a result of the mold contamination. Students from the school were reassigned to three other schools within the city. In place of Jack Elementary School, a new school was built named Portland’s East End Community School. As of September 2005, construction was approximately 55% complete with a projected cost of $9.2 million and was completed by Spring 2006.
In its prime, the school was an impressive building. There were huge hallways with massive solid wood doors opening into large-size classrooms with high ceilings. The playground behind the school was built in the late 80’s by a cooperative effort involving contractors, school faculty and students, as well as members of the community who brought their own tools and donated their time. The new playground was said to be the largest and most modern playground in the city school system when it was finished.
When I heard the school was being torn down I couldn’t wait to get in there and photograph the process. I snuck into the construction site once everyone went home for the day and photographed Jack Elementary School in the middle of its destruction. This is one of my favorite images from that day.