I grew up in the South Bronx section of New York, right after the time the nation declared that the Bronx was burning. There were abandoned buildings everywhere. There were buildings that became crack dens. The South Bronx of today is vastly different from that a couple of decades ago. Although, everyone knows that the Bronx is still the last place to gentrify in New York since the poor and marginalized from New York have been further marginalized to the Bronx. Yet, we have the greatest baseball team and we had the House that Ruth built. The Bronx zoo is grand and the botanical gardens, despite my allergies, are alluring.
However, when I was there the blight was inescapable. I would go to church on Sundays and dream a grand dream. I would dream of having my own place that was free of fear and craziness. I would sit in the pews and dream of setting up a living room on altar area. I wanted a place to call my own and the church’s vastness and grandeur made me long for its everyday comfort.
Thus, when I travel across the globe, I always stop at a church or two or ten to document what my “house” could have been.
Walking through Panama was an entirely different experience in terms of churches which were way less ornate and ventilated. Nonetheless there was a sense of magical realism through the air.
In Dresden the churches took on a completely different feel; whereas there was a sense that one was sneaking into something forbidden.
There is magic to be had in the walls and halls of such architecture. I am glad to have had the opportunity to experience these different buildings throughout the world and look forward to many more.