Gloss digital photo print from scanned negative; framed
20 x 16 in
508.0 x 406.4 mm
50.8 x 40.6 cm
0.508 x 0.4064 meter
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From the series "Valley 6 Drive-In: Closed for the Season, Closed for Good". Framed in black wood.
In the first decade of the 21st century, I lived in South King County near Seattle and studied photography. My weekend drives, with a camera in the passenger seat, often took me to less-traveled agricultural areas of Kent Valley. It was on one of those weekends that I wandered into the empty Valley 6 Drive-In Theatres in the city of Auburn. I revisited it a few times with a camera but I was later sad to find out that the theater had been closed for good and demolished to make room for new development. I also learned how important this drive-in had been to several generations of Kent Valley residents, whose many childhood and teenage memories involved the theater. This essay honors and celebrates this landmark.
Lana Blinderman is a documentary photographer and photo-based artist centered on the documentation and preservation of urban architecture. Her portfolio includes images of many Seattle neighborhoods, the Duwamish River, and South King County. Lana studied photography at the University of Washington’s College of the Built Environments and graduated from Seattle University’s Photography BFA program with a thesis project that depicted early- and mid-twentieth century apartment buildings on Seattle’s Capitol Hill. Following in its footsteps, she is currently creating a photographic record of mid-century modern apartments in her neighborhood in collaboration with Capitol Hill Historical Society.
At a time of fast and momentous land redevelopment, with whole city blocks obliterated for new construction, Lana is on a mission to capture Seattle architecture as we know and experience it in the moment. With a combination of representational accuracy and lyrical touch, she is building a photographic record of built environments while making others aware of their significance not only as shelter but also as historical, aesthetic and social landmarks. Her work doesn’t eulogize lost buildings. It calls for mindful preservation, adaptive reuse, and diversity of housing that ensures affordable rents and saves individuals and communities from economic displacement.
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