“A land…beautifully colored, broken and worn until its bones are exposed” Wallace Stegner
A distinctive terrain of arid hills, spires and sinuous ravines, Badlands are geological formations characterized by extensive erosion of sedimentary rocks.
This series explores these remote landscapes across four sparsely populated counties of the American West, often on Native American land. High altitude or closer to the ground photographs show us how, thanks to their intrinsic harshness and lack of exploitable resources, they have largely escaped the settlement and development age of westward expansion, resembling dusty fragments of the old Frontier, this “meeting point between civilization and savagery”. Here, human presence is scarce and frail, winding jeep roads, rudimentary homesteads standing on the edge, or a pathetic pile of waste discarded in a gully.
In times of climate peril, these otherworldly mineral lands, sculpted over millions of years, throw our human time into vertiginous perspective, between window into an immemorial past and glimpse into a potentially menacing, desolate future.
This project is part of an (ongoing) body of work investigating the mythologized narrative of the American West and exploring some of its complex, singular or rarely seen facets.