The abandoned homes, schools, businesses, churches, and factories I photograph ask questions. Not only how and why these structures came to be vacated, but perhaps more importantly, who were the people who lived, taught, prayed, and conducted business in these places? What kind of lives did they lead? Did they have families? Where did they go?
Stepping into an abandoned home brings a sense of adventure tinged with melancholy and sadness: The damp cold, the stark quiet, the absence of people. Some houses are blank canvases, empty and shorn to the studs, but many contain tantalizing remnants and artifacts - hints, both pedestrian and profound, of the real lives that were there and have now departed. In each, I am compelled to bear witness to the untold stories of lives interrupted.
My photographs of these buildings - as they fall to complete ruin, are engulfed by vegetation or demolished and carted away in pieces – ask you to look beyond their inevitable ruin, to honor the memory and legacy of those who went before; to reflect upon our collective fleeting presence in the universe, and hopefully to make meaning out of that realization.
Cecelia Estrada Vaughan/iti kafi
Chair I am
Never Too Late to be a Poet
front door Opened
Oak leaves fouetté
Some Fading Glimmer Left
Actors' Shakespeare Project
The imagery in the "Days Gone By" photograph inspired our youth ensemble to share these words from Egeon in The Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare.