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The more things change…

9/11 missing signs

These are 9 of the 240 SX-70 Polaroids I took of signs people put up after their loved ones didn’t surface from the bombing of the World Trade Center on Sept 11, 2001…

Thirteen years ago, I was in a cab crossing the 59th street bridge, cursing the traffic, when I turned to look downtown and saw the World Trade Center burning. By the time I’d delivered my assignment (I was shooting fashion week parties for at the time) the whole world had turned upside down as we realized that a brutal act of terrorism can actually happen right at our front door.

For the next few days, I was marooned in the west village with my then boyfriend (now husband) and my SX-70 Polaroid camera (not sure why I had it with me, but there you are.) We spent lots of time wandering the streets, and I found myself compelled to photograph the missing sings that people were beginning to put up– evidence of a desperate optimism that was unfortunately largely unfounded.

And now we listen to President Obama talking about beginning yet another War On Terror against a new mutation of Al Qaeda that threatens to put us all back in the same place we were over a decade ago.

I know that history repeats itself, but it seems to me that the cycles have become unsustainably short.

May all of the once and future victims of this horrible chapter in history rest in peace and may we eventually learn how to live with each other in such a way that we do not feel compelled to blow our fellow man into oblivion every time they stray from whatever our chosen value set might be.

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