“Taxi Driver was shot mostly at night in New York, and the sense of the city sort of bore down on it. Also, Robert De Niro, who had spent a month really driving a taxi at night to get into the spirit of the film, maintains his character throughout. When he develops a character, he really becomes that person—both internally and externally—and he maintained that character pretty much on and off the screen. It was a much more tense situation than on The Godfather and many other films I’ve worked on.”
Detroit doesn’t simply decay with time. It wrestles with decay by putting up new skyscrapers and tearing down others. Fresh strips of sidewalk were paved in front of vacant lots. Some beautiful old mansions were renovated but never quite finished. When Detroit hosted the Super Bowl in 2006, the city even tried to string festive lights on abandoned office buildings.
“To me,” says photographer Camile Jose Vergara, “the whole story got more and more interesting as time passed, because it got more complicated.”
Photographer Deborah Bay doesn’t want to detail her own gun control views: “I think it’s up to the viewer to interpret the work,” she says. But the photographer does ask us to “realize the impact any of these bullets would have on muscle and bone,” and to appreciate how pervasive guns have become in America.
Ben Roberts’ Amazon Unpackedisa haunting series of photographs that exposes the inner workings of Amazon’s massive fulfillment center in the English Midlands.
Locals hoped that the center would boost the local economy, which was devastated by the closure of a coal mine, the area’s main employer. Instead, Roberts explains, Amazon workers are turned into ‘human robots’ and guaranteed little-to-no job security.
"An Amazon fulfillment associate might have to walk as far as 15 miles in a single shift, endlessly looping back and forth between shelves in a warehouse the size of nine soccer fields. They do this in complete silence, except for the sound of their feet. The atmosphere is so quiet that workers can be fired for even talking to one another."
For Roberts, this isn’t about how something you order off of Amazon comes to your door. It’s about how fulfillment centers like Rugeley represent the invisible cost buried in every low Amazon price.
“We are ceasing to see. Using our eyes to appreciate beauty is no longer enough. It always has to be documented for some other time—often resulting in an abyss of recordings. My first thought at a pretty sunset—where’s my phone?”