© 2022









LAST
MILE

THOUGHTS





TEXT Giorgia Burzio
WORK
Last Mile by Sarah Crofts
LOCATION
Red Hook, Brooklyn, USA



Acting as documentary photography and forensic index, Last Mile is a series of lumen prints that tell a story of gentrification and neighbourhood transformation in Red Hook, Brooklyn. The artist Sarah Crofts, a longtime resident of Red Hook, developed the prints by pressing sheets of analogue black and white photo paper against newly erected construction barriers and old overgrown fences. At the intersection of craft and photography, the artist developed a personal way to map the changes in the urban environment, through a haptic approach that is bonded with a deep knowledge regarding the specific printing technique. Crofts is thus mapping her changing environment, while personally reflecting on her tendency to forget buildings that are being demolished, in favour of some other interests.

Reflecting on the project as a way of mapping the environment, these prints can be described as attempts of counter-cartography, or counter-mapping. A new approach on map-making that adopts a critical approach to traditional mapping. Since the first map collections of the late 16th century, the notion of “Atlas” carried a statement: maps show the way the world is, and they produce true knowledge about the surface of the earth. This premise is nevertheless unrealistic and problematic; as truth and knowledge are in fact deeply linked to power. Who makes the maps? And most importantly, what are maps? These open questions find many possible answers, including the approach of this specific project, which sees the mapping process as an intimate way of remembering places, textures, shapes and patterns of a fast-changing environment.






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