There is a place - returned to dust

Wildfires have become an integral part of the project There is a place. I spent particular time investigating the historic Woolsey Fire of 2018 in Southern California that burned with the speed of 80 football fields a minute through the Santa Monica Mountains while nearly 300,000 people were evacuating. I recorded the disaster’s strange aftermath of debris fields with memories in ashes and the black nudity of a landscape rich and verdant before. Flash floods followed as spring rains fell onto the denuded terrain creating destruction in their path leaving piles of mud and rocks to be cleared from properties and roadways. Then with a beautiful turn of growth and an explosive abundance of wildflowers the process of ecological succession brought the hillsides of the Santa Monica Mountains back to vibrant life. As the images show us what has been lost, we are reminded of just how fragile life really is, perhaps only a borrowed time before a lifetime is returned to dust.

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