There’s this idea of taking a portrait of someone through their space: Not through the space that they want hidden off, but the space they occupy. Not the ballroom, but the bathroom. This is something you’ve maybe been doing all along. And so when you talk about humans really being the kindling that sets fire to an image, I understand what you mean, but there’s a kind of charge to photographing the small spaces of someone’s life. 

The question, the problem in fact, is how to draw a line that encompasses both ourselves and these histories, and yet seeks to claim them in the morbid light that they cast on us all in this place, as inheritors of a dream whose radiance is buttressed by so much blood that the telling of it sickens, withers flesh, prompts an instinctual aversion of the eyes? What is it to want this, if this is America? What is it to want an America that cannot own its genesis, if not the wilful obliviousness of Random Harvest, the sort that obliterates all recol­lections of the trauma of bloodshed in order to find freedom and love in the hollowed vacuum of amnesia? What sort of freedom would ask of us to forget acts and events such as these, and the sure and certain knowl­edge that their calculus continues, both at home and abroad? Or, is forgetting in fact the necessary measure of American freedom?

Langton Street, where Delaney lived, was located on the far western edge of the ­redevelopment area — less than a mile away from the razed central zone. It comprised a mix of small-scale apartment buildings, light industrial businesses, and a few single-family homes. Delaney’s neighbors included families with young children, artists, gay men, retired blue-collar workers, and the owners of assorted types of small, light industrial businesses. While few of them were at imminent risk of losing their homes or commercial spaces to the wrecking ball, they were all feeling the pressures of redevelopment in other, often insidious ways. 

Nowadays we exist thanks to images: Imago, ergo sum. The adaptation of the corollary to our condition as Homo pictor gives us ‘I photograph, therefore I am’, because there is no doubt that the camera has become one of the vital contraptions that encourage us to venture into the world and traverse it both visually and intellectually: whether we realise it or not, photography is also a form of philosophy.
Alex Majoli’s approach to image making constitutes a profound reflection upon the conditions of theatricality that are implicit in both photography and a world we have come to understand as something that is always potentially photographable. If the world is expecting to be photographed, it exists in a perpetual state of potential theatre. Whether it is a surveillance camera, a smart phone camera, or a photojournalist’s lens, the omnipresence of photography has created a heightened state of camera-consciousness.

Through her pictures, she takes a stand for the vibrancy of our thoughts, the importance of our customs. In that sense, her total body of work serves as some kind of manifesto or thesis, which argues that we are all worthy of attention, we are all interesting enough to be looked at—not regarded with bias, as some novelty, but truly seen, with dignity, respect, and reverence.