As a child growing up on Staten Island I can remember the stench of the landfill on hot days, the flocks of seagulls circling the dump for the day’s fresh delivery of trash from the 5 boroughs of New York, and the stigma of living so close to the worlds largest landfill. When I began working for the local papers in 1990 I found myself in the landfill working on stories related to waste management and the eventual closing of Fresh Kills. I witnessed the temporary reopening to help in the 9/11 clean up. When the 15 year anniversary of the closing was upon us I had independently thought of trying to gain access to the park to document the changes, fortunately, I was invited to participate in Capturing Change. The landscape keeps me coming back I am looking at the park now as a wild place in its infancy, grasses are taking over the road and wildlife is flourishing and it's all happening in my backyard. This place I once looked at as an embarrassment now gives a sense of pride to Staten Island.
Having the opportunity to shoot up at the East Mound or any of the hills for that matter is quite a unique experience in New York City, you feel as if you are somewhere else, somewhere far away from the traffic and the malls and the bustling crowds of people. You still see the refinery of New Jersey and the Manhattan skyline but you are separated from it, you’re surrounded by grass which to me shooting in Black and white translates to texture and shape.