Exploring power, culture, & the history of cities through present-day photo recreations of old postcards.
This started as an Instagram project in 2019, but it was time for a more dedicated home for the original writing, research, and photography (as well as postcards sourced from library digital collections and my own, of course).
I'm interested in economic, social, and urban history, and what we learn about them when we compare these highly edited, aspirational bits of old ephemera and the built environment of today. Stories about the rise-and-fall of entire industries, institutional discrimination, and the destruction of public transit systems. Racism, as well as resiliency and creativity in the face of that racism. Immigration, real estate booms, and disinvestment. Too many parking lots, so many collapsed banks, tons of financial crime. Civil rights progress. Advances in engineering. Pandemics. Leaps forward in medical care. Privatization of public goods. Secularization. Adaptive reuse.
For me, the gap between these stylized depictions of cities past and our societies present creates space to say, "hey, our world changed SO MUCH in a short time. Through power and culture and policy-making, PEOPLE changed our world so much in a short time.
...so how do we build and wield power to create a future that is better than our past and present?"