My relationship to the town and the community has evolved from my being a child here to being an adult. In the months after my wife and I arrived in Marlboro to stay, I began photographing people in front of their homes for the town’s Historical Society. My childhood understanding of Marlboro and who lived here was quickly redefined as I worked. Many of the old-timers I remembered had died – Charlie Adams, Lon Gilbert, Luke Dalrymple. To educate myself on our local history I pored through the Historical Society’s picture files and found amazing 19th century landscape and family photographs. I internalized these images and worked with my camera to build something new upon this old foundation of town photographs.
I photographed people who had done the same thing when they built their houses. They had reclaimed an old cellar hole and built a new house structure on top: joining history to the living present. I came to understand that my photographic project was in accordance with the lives and actions of townspeople around me.
It is difficult in the society of today to hear the old voices. In a country with insatiable hunger for progress, we have left much wisdom behind. In numerous other cultures, the reverence of ancestors supports the present and gives those living the power to persevere through life’s hardships. My work in Marlboro has encouraged my awareness of these old, essential forces. These presences energize me and keep me in touch with the brevity of human life on earth.
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