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Faces in Transit

I took these pictures for a course at the Universitaet der Kuenste.

One of my favorite film sequences comes in Himmel ueber Berlin (Wings of Desire), directed by Wim Wenders: the camera pans across a number of mostly somber Berlin faces in an U-Bahn while the audio track whispers the depicted persons’ thoughts to us. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thought of that sequence while riding mass transit in Berlin–the mood is far more somber here than in New York, and I thought Wenders captured it beautifully. For my photo essay, I wanted to examine the U-Bahn as a public place in which people often wear their “private” faces; I wanted to shoot all the subjects through the windows not just because of the pretty reflected-light effects but also to explore the border between inside and outside, of capturing a surface while trying to peer beneath it.

The final shot is a self-portrait, my reflection as captured in the windows of the U-Bahn in motion.

You can see the slide show as a full screen presentation by clicking on the “View All Images” tab, which takes you to the Slide.com website.

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