In American Power, Mitch Epstein investigates notions of power, both electrical and political: who has it, what do they do with it and how does it affect other people? From 2003 to 2005, Epstein traveled across the United States to photograph in and around sites where fossil fuel, nuclear, hydroelectric, wind, solar and other alternative power are produced. The resulting pictures contain Epstein's characteristic mix of complex wit, surprising detail, and formal rigor.
While making this series, Epstein encountered Homeland Security obstacles, environmental contamination, corporate impenetrability, and a culture of excess. In an accompanying essay, he tells how these experiences led him to think harder about the artist's role in a country teetering between collapse and transformation.
The images in this book underscore the intersection between energy production and consumption; climate change and corporatism; society and landscape. Here is a portrait of early 21st century America as it clings to past comforts and gropes for a sensible future.
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