Archival Pigment Print
33 X 25 in
Photographs of discarded, raggedy objects suspended in a black, vacuum-like background become a point of departure for conversations about the process of gentrification. The objects are residue– surviving silent witnesses of the complex set of political practices and dynamics of power that exist behind the creation of the Art District in the heart of Wynwood, a poor Miami neighborhood.
Because the production of place is linked to specific practices amongst its inhabitants (e.g. shared sets of routines and symbols infused with particular meanings,) the affiliations that form in each community are relationships of power. Here, power is seen as the struggle (unstable, multiple, and temporal) by the superimposition of one range of meanings over another. This superimposition happens through social and economic materialities, where stigmatization and disinvestment are catalysts for the displacement of communal values. Gentrification is a relationship of power that looks to co-opt the meanings, values, and practices of a place and put them to the service of an economic benefit. Following this dynamic, place becomes a void– an empty, malleable space where the ones who posses an economic advantage are those who decide what to fill it with and how.