|Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau|
The gift of photography is that it presents a brutal truth, even if we are desperate to deceive, it resists. I am slowly returning to a photographic project I started a little over a year ago – “Baltimore: Sorrow, Promise and Hope.”
There is something about this city that lingers in my consciousness, pushes itself to the forefront of my mind as I drive through neighborhoods which resemble developing countries, whole roofs missing, decaying structures, ubiquitous liquor stores, and abandoned buildings which once held thriving businesses. The ghosts of progress abound.
Yet twenty minutes later, while making my way through Roland Park, there are manicured lawns and regal homes, a testament to the contrasts in this city – privilege and poverty, hope and despair, the dreamers and disillusioned.
How do we move from acknowledging those contrasts to building a community, one rooted in the kind of inclusiveness that is not blind to difference, but rather works within it to help us understand one another more fully? No one has a definitive answer, or all of this would be solved. Still, I am looking forward to beginning my own exploration of this question through pictures, words and dialogue with others.
How do you think we can begin moving out our bubbles to understanding one another more? Is it through art, joining social justice organizations, volunteering, etc.?