These photographs are a discovery of a neighborhood – one that lies between a city’s downtown and suburbs. This “Midtown” community contains people from all classes living alongside one another framed within an eclectic backdrop. The project includes people, places, and ephemera that explore the psychology of my neighborhood.
Kenwood Avenue began with me simply loading film and walking out my front door. Working on foot allowed me to slow down and explore. The initial emphasis was on discovery which allowed the images to shape the message. Although this is my neighborhood, the subjects for my portraits were all strangers met while walking. At times these chance encounters sparked conversations that stuck with me and affected me – and the way I saw the landscape.
The photographs within the Kenwood Avenue series explore this idea: we put up a façade and seem to exist comfortably within our space, yet we are dealing with a variety of things that complicate this veneer. We collectively experience one another in varying degrees of intensity – many relationships barely break the surface of humanity.
As I make photographs I am interested in learning about my subject and myself - I want to discover. To me, photographs contain the object seen through the viewfinder but I am far more interested in what the image communicates and represents; metaphor is highly important to me. Ultimately, I use the camera as a way to share my thoughts and ideas.
My process is one that involves exploration and discovery – I experience the world, react, and record things that intrigue me. I prefer to work with a mindset where my goals and motivations are not pinned down... in a way that allows for surprise and the unexpected.
Adam J Long was born in Washington state. He studied photography in Los Angeles, California, Sunderland, England and Hartford, Connecticut. His photographs have been exhibited internationally and are in the permanent collection of The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, The Hirsch Library – Museum of Fine Arts Houston, and the Colorado Photographic Arts Center. The Kenwood Avenue photobook was exhibited at the Davis Orton Gallery in New York and at various international exhibits in conjunction with the Fotobook Festival Dummy Award 2014. He currently resides in Kansas City, MO with his wife and three children where he teaches photography.
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