This project is a visual ethnography photographic study of homeless camps in the Front Range urban corridor of Colorado from an archaeological perspective. I first encountered homeless camps during archaeological surveys of urban areas in the late 1990s. Homelessness is a serious social issue, particularly in times of great economic disparity between the rich and the poor. Additionally, homelessness does not discriminate, it can happen to anyone, and it affects everyone. It does not recognize sex, gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, etc.
In May of 2018 I traveled to Nice, France to attend the Solaris Film Festival. A film that I worked on with Kayla Briet and Isabella Dos Santos, "Solitude, Darkness, Light" was accepted for screening, and since I’ve always wanted to go to France, I thought it would be worth looking into. The only way I could afford to go was to make it a short trip, and only ended up being in Nice for only two days. I made the most of it and ended up having a wonderful time. I met some amazing filmmakers and artists at the festival, and I gave myself time to walk around the city. Since 1984 I have been a fan of French photographer Eugène Atget (1857-1927). So, while I was there, I couldn't help myself in making photographs that emulated his work.
Inner peace can be found in places of solitude, where the human and natural worlds have become one, but there is often a journey of transformation that must first occur. I created these still images for a film that I co-directed with filmmaker/musician Kayla Briet, and dancer/writer/animator Isabela Dos Santos. We collectively conceived of this project as an exploration of how humans and nature interface in time and space, as expressed in places of solitude. My task was to use still photography to create an imaginary world that was a blend of abstraction and realism.
Archaeologist and photographer Thomas Carr produced Tree and Leaf as a magnificent and subtle exploration of trees that connect more intimately with the simple places in nature that might otherwise be overlooked. Carr’s large-scale color and black and white photographs depicted each of Colorado’s colorful seasons. Each image within Tree and Leaf was an attempt to honor the many natural places throughout the state while capturing the beauty and personality of an array of tree varieties. Carr enjoys creating metaphors regarding the cycles of life in nature through his photographs.
This series of photographs is a look back at the history of the Cold War from a personal perspective. Historians generally agree that this conflict lasted from around 1947 until several years after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Having been born in 1964 in the middle of this era, I experienced this period as a child and young adult. I also had the privilege of visiting Russia in 1994, which is featured in another gallery on my website called "Vladivostok". The photographs in this portfolio are a mix of straight and composite images - some are even presented as a sort of "what if?" scenario. They are combinations of contemporary places, historic sites, objects, and Cold War era propaganda posters. This series represents my real and imagined fears of atomic energy and my general fascination with the time period. The project itself is a spin-off from my 2010 "Excavating Childhood" portfolio that involved studying and photographing toys that I had found in my parents back yard between 2007 and 2009. I had built, destroyed, and buried those toys in the 1970s. The process of trying to understand what the toys meant to me, how I interacted with them, and why they became archaeological artifacts, eventually led me to a deeper understanding of what it meant to be a young man growing up in Cold War era America.
From May through July of 2015, I was honored by the Denver Public Library with an exhibition of my photography in their 5th floor Western Art Gallery. The prints in that exhibit were then accessioned into their permanent art collection. Welcome to my exhibition of photographic work titled EXPEDITIONS. The work represents a continuation of my studies of historic and archaeological places since 2004. This series concentrates on the core of my artistic and intellectual endeavors – the exploration of natural landscapes and built places that exhibit a subtle sense of past human presence.
The photographs in this series roughly reflect my interpretation of what scholars call Lovecraft's dream cycle. This is a series of repeated themes and elements in many of his stories that connect to a larger narrative about mankind's history on Earth, horrors from alternate dimensions, and space faring Old Ones from forgotten times. I have carefully chosen excerpts from some of his stories as they relate to my vision of his world. As I was creating these images I shared them with my wife Laurie. One day she told me she was upset with me because the images had caused her to have nightmares. I replied "great, that's just what I hoped". She replied "not great, what I hope for is to be able to sleep".
This portfolio is a long term documentation project of the historic places and natural landscape associated with the southern Atlantic Coast along South Carolina and Georgia. I have only shown individual images in juried shows. In 2019 I completed a book about the project that is available through Blurb publishing.
While shooting photographs of an abandoned building in 2010, I made an accidental double exposure with my 4x5 camera that turned out quite nice. Based on that chance occurrence and the montage work in my Conflict on the Plains and Excavating Childhood series, I started shooting digital images with the idea of combining the images to create fantastic places. The thematic inspiration for this series is Tarkovsky's 1979 film Stalker. In the film an area in Russian has become uninhabitable due to some catastrophe where the laws of time and space have stopped working. Only adventurous people dare to travel into what is called "The Zone", led by people with extrasensory skills called Stalkers. This is my exploration of the Zone.
“Excavating Childhood” represents an exploration of aspects of my youth between 1975 and 1980. While walking around the backyard in 2007, I noticed a number of plastic models parts eroding out of the ground. Being an archaeologist by profession, I was intrigued. Finding these “artifacts” from my own youth prompted me to explore my own artwork from the same time period. Fortunately, I had saved many of my old negatives and drawings. I began scanning them and thinking about what I had intended for them when I first created them. I realized that when I first made the photographs and drawings, I had high ideals for what they represented, but was unable to fully realize them given the level of my skills and other technological limits. The collages from this project aren’t exact representations of what I intended them to be when I was young – rather they represent a synthesis of their original intent and my impression of what they mean now looking back as an adult.
The images in this series represent one artists’ interpretation of the struggle of the Native American peoples of the Great Plains during the 19th century. This was a time when the United States of American actively sought to destroy the entire Plains Indian culture. The images are photographic montages that combine contemporary photographs of village/massacre sites with 19th century photographs of Cheyenne, Arapaho, and Lakota peoples. Part of the inspiration for this project came from the artist watching the healing process between Anglo Americans and Native Americans. It involves acknowledging what happened in the past, coming to grips with its consequences, and finding a way to mutually move forward.
The ancient Native American peoples of the American southwest first occupied lands along the San Juan River in what is today New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah as early as 1000 BC. Over the next two thousand years these people would develop into a complex agricultural society that maintained one of the largest populations of ancient peoples in North America. This exhibit features photographs from a variety of archaeological sites that represent the ancient homes and sacred landscape of the north place of the Ancestral Puebloan world. This includes Mesa Verde National Park, Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, Chaco Culture National Historic Park, Chimney Rock Archaeological Area, Aztec Ruins National Monument, and Canyonlands National Park.
This portfolio is a series of photographs that I took in Scotland in the fall of 2003 and exhibited at the Dairy Arts Center in Boulder, Colorado in 2005. Exploring Scotland was an archaeologist's dream. I also learned about the ancient roots of the Carr/Kerr clan and my own likely ancestry in this region of the world. As a Native American friend told me, she was happy that I had found where my tribe came from.
This was my first major exhibition after deciding that I still wanted to keep showing my work while working a career in archaeology. My work exposed me to many amazing historic resources that I would photograph. This portfolio covered the first ten years of living in the Western USA, and was exhibited at the Center for Southwest Studies, the Farmington Museum, and the Anasazi Heritage Center between 2004 and 2007.
This is a project I initially worked on between 1986 and 1990. The area was the subject of several undergraduate archaeology projects. In 1998-1999 I revised it and made a documentary film about the original research in the 80s. It's about a Mecklenburg County, North Carolina farming community with a history of occupation and abandonment - full of scary woods, creepy ruins, and "things that come out of the well at night". You can view the documentary film on The Archaeology Channel.
This portfolio and exhibition was held at the University of Colorado at Boulder Department of Anthropology in 1995 to 1996 and featured photographs of archaeological and historical places taken between 1986 and 1993 in the Southeastern United States. In 2020 I compiled these images into a book and added new work from the Carolinas.
In the summer of 1994, I had the honor of being one of a handful of American and Canadian scientists to travel to the Russian city of Vladivostok in conjunction with the 45th Annual Arctic and Alpine Science Conference. The city is located on the Pacific coast near Russia’s border with China and North Korea and is the administrative center for the Far Eastern Federal Districts. It is home to the Russian Pacific fleet and is the largest Russian port on the Pacific. While there had been unofficial business visitors to the city after the collapse of the former Soviet Union in December of 1991, our group was the first official Western delegation. Due in part to its remoteness, many of the cities historic Czarist and Communist Revolution public art and architecture have remained intact. Some of them are seen in my photographs.
Between 1985 and 1988 I continued to explore the landscape of Mecklenburg County, I was especially interested in creeks and would hike along various ones flowing through the county. Some of the images in this portfolio were featured in a 1988 group exhibition with Bill Moretz, and Wally Warren in Charlotte, NC.
This was my first serious portfolio and exhibition. It was a study of the seasons at a local part. I was studying photography and art history at at local community college at the time. Shortly after this series was completed, I switched my major to Anthropology.
This portfolio contains examples of my earliest serious efforts in photography starting around age 12 and continuing into my first year of college. Many of these photographs were chosen for Gold Key and Kodak Medallion of Excellence awards in the Scholastic art exhibitions, or for my first juried exhibitions at places like The Light Factory in Charlotte, NC. They also helped win me recognition from the National YoungArts Foundation as a Promising Young Artist in the visual arts in 1982.
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