For the past decade, I have been a street photographer in Seattle. My most recent work has featured the mass construction in our city.
Project: Co-Mingle began in February 2015 when I came across a Co-Mingle sign on the corner of Boren and Thomas in South Lake Union at the landmark Troy Block Building. Until then, I intended to have a show documenting all the destruction and obstruction in the city. All my shots were taken from the street or from a step ladder that cleared the tops of the six foot fences that surrounded the construction sites that kept popping up in the various neighborhoods. As of June of 2016, 65 buildings were under construction with an estimated construction cost of $3.5 billion.
When I saw the Co-Mingle sign I thought it was an invitation from Lease Crutcher Lewis inviting the community to co-mingle peacefully during their construction. I saw this as a possible opportunity to fulfill my desire to shoot inside the curtained fence. The next day, I purchased two hard hats, and my friend, Sarah Littlefield and I showed up at the site of the Troy Block and I asked to speak with the head of the site.
Ron McDonnell came out and after a quick introduction, gave Josh Ditzenberger, the safety coordinator, permission to walk me through a safety class and escort me to the bottom of the pit. Once I crossed the threshold and descended the scaffolding to the bottom of the pit, I was awestruck.
I had no idea this event would change my contempt for all the construction taking place all over Seattle and positively captivate me for the greater part of two years. I have lost count of the number of times I returned to shoot inside the fence.
In August at the topping off party, I was granted permission to exhibit Project: Co-Mingle at the Troy Block Building. I couldn't imagine a better place for the installation. The date has yet to be determined. Construction of the panels is underway.