Kirk Crippens‘s images from his series, “The Great Depression: Foreclosure, USA,” look at the after effects of economic crises in America. Crippens began the project in 2008 in Stockton, one of California’s largest cities. Stockton benefited from a housing boom early in the 21st century, but in 2012 the became one of the largest in America’s history to declare bankruptcy. In a statement about the work, Crippens says the project was inspired by the iconic Dust Bowl images taken by photographers—Dorothea Lange, for example—for the Farm Security Administration during the Great Depression. Crippens’s riff on the FSA project from the 1930s differs in his color palette, and instead of including portraits, his photographs only allude to a human presence.
“Foreclosure, USA” is only one aspect of Crippens’s three-part series on The Great Recession. Images from the series are included in a new exhibit at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. “‘State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now,‘ brings together the work of more than 100 artists in an unprecedented exploration of the power of today’s American art,” the museum said in a statement. The exhibition also includes public programming and activities.