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Garrett Grove Photographs American Identity And Anxiety In The Trump Era

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Name
Project
Journey To The Interior
Words

‘Journey To The Interior’, a poem about the search for self-discovery in an unfamiliar landscape penned in 1985 by Margaret Atwood, is the conceptual basis for American photographer Garrett Grove’s three-year project of the same title.

Grove’s series is a documentation of rural America during the year leading up to, and the year following, the 2016 Presidential election. Moody grayscale landscapes are juxtaposed against color portraits of working-class civilians, taken in country towns including Pomeroy in the state of Washington, and Jordan Valley in Oregon, where population levels are low. ‘Journey To The Interior’ focuses on identity, anxiety, and the current state of the American Dream, “as it was in the rural communities I lived in and traveled through while working on this project”, explains Grove. “It was a time of personal disruption and examination, and as a result, this project reflects my own psyche as much as it does that of the people and places I encountered”. Grove set out with the intention of understanding something larger than his own lived experience. In the process, this curiosity “created a picture of America that mirrors my own confusion of navigating a cultural identity that time is moving past”.

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Photos from the HWY 2 corridor in Washington State
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All images © Garrett Grove