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All That Remains

Although I have always taken photographs of landscapes, they are not my primary area of interest. I prefer to be out in the streets, photographing the interaction of people in their day-to-day lives. I find even the most ordinary of these events fascinating, much to the wonder and amusement of my subjects.

Landscapes, however, are always just there. Before I became seriously involved with photography, I painted and could interpret the feeling of that which lay in front of me. With the camera (and not having Ansel Adams’ temperament), I did not have the time to sit and observe the changes that weather and light render on land and sky. This was before I began my travels in the Balkans, and most especially before the war in Kosova.

So much was destroyed during that time and later, beginning with the preliminary Serb assaults on family compounds in 1998, and continuing to this day with Albanian retribution.

People have rebuilt, sometimes right next to the ruins, because there are still some materials that can be salvaged for the new structures. The demolition and carting away of debris are low priorities on the UNMIK agenda.

So the ruins remain. Over the past few years, they have weathered, their initial rawness, like an open wound, softened by weeds and wet. It is this quality that draws me to the uninhabited landscapes with their traces of lives once lived; so much better if the sky is roiling with storm clouds.