Capturing The Clothes We Consume

Andrew Sullivan —  Dec 10 2012 @ 8:04am

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For his series "Baled," Wesley Law photographed bundled items at Goodwill liquidation centers:

It took him nine months. And when he finally got access, he found an awesome panorama — thousands of items leftover from Goodwill stores around the country, crammed together in bales as large as 5 feet tall by 7 feet wide, awaiting transport to new destinations. Initially, Law thought he'd shoot the scene as a landscape, to capture the size and scope of the facility and its contents. But on a second visit, he started considering the bales individually. "I realized when I got close to these things that they each have their own personality. They have their own identity," he says.

From Law's artist statement:

We are not forced to live among our refuse, knowing the immediacy of its decline, unaware of the process it undergoes. Our waste is conveniently carted off by mainly unseen forces. The average American discards 4.34 pounds of garbage each day. The majority of which ends up in a landfill or gets shipped overseas. Almost 200 million pounds of donated clothing was sold in 2011 by one non-profit in particular. The vast unknown quantities not sold were baled and sent away.

(Image by Wesley Law. Check out his Kickstarter here.)