Alluring decay, disquieting beauty : Andrew Moore’s Detroit photographs


Alluring decay, disquieting beauty : Andrew Moore’s Detroit photographs

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dc.contributor.advisor Hoelscher, Steven D.
dc.creator Gansky, Andrew Emil 2012-07-23T19:37:13Z 2012-07-23T19:37:13Z 2012-05 2012-07-23 May 2012
dc.description.abstract Andrew Moore’s series of photographs, Detroit Disassembled (2010), debuted in the United States in the midst of an escalating recession, mortgage and foreclosure crisis, and political fallout from federally-backed bank and automaker bailouts. Due to their subject matter, a number of viewers have interpreted the photographs as apt visualizations of contemporary crises. The photos depict the ruins of a cityscape scarred by decades of deindustrialization, economic decline, and significant outmigration. Shown in galleries, museums, on the Web, and published in a popular photo book, Moore’s images have circulated relatively widely. Viewers have responded to the photos through a variety of media outlets, and their impressions of the images have been melancholic, visceral, distressed, and deeply uncertain. Some viewers have attacked Moore for exploiting and aestheticizing Detroit’s suffering, others have perceived the images as a disturbing commentary on the state of the nation, and many have found the images beautiful, if desolate. The tensions between viewer responses, carrying the inflections of contemporary concerns, provide a valuable snapshot of how Moore’s photographs of Detroit have furnished a flashpoint and modulated a public discourse encompassing a number of interconnected apprehensions about the economy, deindustrialization, the environment, and social responsibility. However, Detroit’s protracted experience of decline and abandonment has made the intersection of aesthetics and urban politics in Moore’s photographs particularly controversial and troubling for some viewers. Because photographs are only partial glimpses of social and spatial phenomena, Moore’s images have proven versatile in their ability to distill and illustrate multifarious viewer concerns.
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso eng
dc.subject Photography
dc.subject Detroit
dc.subject Andrew Moore
dc.subject Ruins
dc.subject Postindustrialism
dc.title Alluring decay, disquieting beauty : Andrew Moore’s Detroit photographs 2012-07-23T19:37:22Z
dc.identifier.slug 2152/ETD-UT-2012-05-5252
dc.contributor.committeeMember Lewis, Randolph
dc.description.department American Studies
dc.type.genre thesis
dc.type.material text American Studies American Studies University of Texas at Austin Masters Master of Arts

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