DUMPSITES by Stephen Chalmers
These are images of locations in the west where serial killers have disposed of the bodies of their victims, located through Freedom of Information Act searches, police reports, true-crime novels, and other sources..
Allen, Caroll, Gerald, Gunnar, Jacobson, Cosner, Peranteau,
Stapley, Bond, Bond Jr., O'Connor, Dubs
This project reminds me of Joel Sternfeld's On This Site- in which he revisited and photographed locations that made the newspaper headlines when he was growing up. For example, Sternfeld photographed the motel where MLK was killed, the spot on the Ohio State campus where the students were gunned down during the anti-war protest etc... They were all shot dead-pan and included a brief statement about the incident that made that particular location significant to him.
Though these recordings of the tragically memorialized landscapes by Chalmers are documents to an extent, the use of a shallow depth of field adds an emoitional quality that prevents them from being categorized, like Sternfields, as dead pan. The ironic nature is that Sternfeld personally memorialized those locations (even if it was through a memory created by the media)- while Chalmers is living out a cultural history that is not directly his own.
Read more about Chalmers and the exhitiion here.