THE STORIES DISAPPEARING WITH LOUISIANA'S COASTLINE
Louisiana’s decades of coastal loss have culminated into impending catastrophe for its southernmost communities. The past fifty years have seen twenty percent of Louisiana’s wetlands subside or erode into the ocean. These wetlands support the highest biodiversity of flora and fauna in the United States, as well as the traditions and cultures of people who call the bayou home. “Louisiana Gone” is a call to action. Our goal is to record a glimpse of what will be lost if we do not respond with haste to this crisis. If we continue to wait until the damage is irreversible, it will survive to remind us of our collective failure.
Black and white film photography was chosen as the medium because of its history preserving the character of America’s most iconic imagery. “V-J Day in Times Square” by Alfred Eisenstaedt, Dorthea Lange’s weathered Dust Bowl portraits, and Ansel Adam’s western landforms are examples ubiquitous in American history textbooks. We are attempting to produce equally powerful, historically significant, and archival documentation.
The “Louisiana Gone” website serves as a record of the trips we take, interviews we conduct, and a selection of the photographs we collect as we work towards self-publishing a photography book in January 2017. This project is made possible by a Roger Hadfield Ogden Leaders Program Scholarship distributed by the Louisiana State University Ogden Honors College.