This is one of my personal all-time favorite photos, which I took in Santa Monica one morning a while back.
What I love about it is that it captures the concrete reality and the ephemeral at once. It shows an image of California that one can actually experience here when driving, which is that the road in front of you has disappeared or ends abruptly. It also recalls the theme of solid and air, density and atmospheric. All of the man-made signs, street markings and street signs, street lamps, speak of an effort to create the possibility of order. The rising, undulating street appears to possibly be a bridge rising to allow ships to pass underneath it. Yet the movement is illusory. Life is both real and a dream.
In the year 2001 I returned to my project that began in 1995, of photographing Los Angeles, without concern to subject. I would merely take pictures of any and everything I found visually intriguing. Between 1995 and 2007 I would take over 25,000 photographs in the Los Angeles region. I began to categorize the works over time, and then to focus on particular areas, such as Los Angeles vernacular architecture, and photographing LA at night.
I am currently going through my archive. I’ll post more photographs as time allows.
Vincent Johnson is an artist and writer in Los Angeles. He has recently been named a 2010 United States Artists Project artist.
The USA site went live on December 7, 2010