200 Houses: Distressed and Foreclosed

 

Shot in the city of Pittsburgh and its surrounding environs between 2007-2009, these images were made during the end of the housing boom, through the beginning of the market crash, to now what is known as the Great Recession. During the height, these houses and their interiors embodied the difficult struggle that affected so many millions. These monuments are represented in various states of disrepair, foreclosure and full abandonment. Often these lines are blurred as much of the damage came at the hand of the occupants as a result of a notice of foreclosure and order to vacate. Many of these homes were abandoned leaving the only the traces of the lives that inhabited them; while others were left in such haste that entire tracts of family history and memories lay disregarded and forgotten. These images follow in the tradition of crime scene photographs, with each image documenting some important piece of evidence. This paper trail leads to a crime that, in someway or another, we have all had a hand.

 

During this time period, well over a thousand images were made. Only a small portion are represented on the site. Although a departure from my large-format performance-based work, they convey an existential message of "struggle" in a way that the body cannot.

All Images © Kerry Skarbakka 2017