Last Updated on 07/27/2018 by Mark Beckenbach
This photo book about Atlantic City is both a documentary project and a strong political statement.
If you’re into documentary photography and are looking for contemporary projects on the genre, you might want to check out this photo book on Kickstarter. Simply titled Atlantic City, New York-based photographer Brian Rose aims to document the once vibrant resort city as it is left reeling from the destruction left by Donald Trump.
To present his case and make his stand, Brian begins his campaign with a brief background about Atlantic City. In the beginning, he said, this playground by the sea was the place to be for the working class, with its beachfront hotels, boardwalk promenade, and entertainment piers. With the emerging affluence of post-war America, people eventually discovered other vacation spots to flock to, and Atlantic City’s glimmer slowly faded. City leaders and urban planners saw promise in establishing the resort town as a casino city, with the hopes of bringing back its lost glory.
“And it worked, for a while,” Brian said, hinting that the positive outcome was temporary and a greater misfortune was to hit Atlantic City later. “Until a new kind of predator arrived in the name of Donald Trump, a fabulously wealthy real estate developer from New York City. That wealth, it turned out, was fed by illicit Russian money, and Trump’s casinos served as money laundering machines of unprecedented scale.”
All of Trump’s casinos eventually closed down, and with it the lifeblood of the resort town as thousands were left jobless and the city penniless. Brian made it his mission to document the dreary reality that is now Atlantic City “in the wake of destruction left by Donald Trump.”
In some of the photos Brian shared for the campaign, it’s almost surreal to see the remnants of Trump’s handiwork on the city. While he also aims for Atlantic City to be a symbol of a strong political stand, the project also doubles as photographic evidence that casinos will no longer sustain the town or bring back its lost glitz and glamour.
Brian is working with Circa Press to bring Atlantic City to publication, and he plans for the book to be available in early 2019. The campaign is still a little short of its $12,000 funding goal with 13 days more to go. So if you’re keen on supporting this project, head to the Kickstarter page to show your support and grab a copy of the book.
All images by Brian Rose via Atlantic City on Kickstarter