Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Prefab Indiana

Prefabricated houses roll south, 70 miles per hour, on I-69. I daydream north, 13+ years, 70 miles per hour, I-69 between my Indianapolis home near Exit 0 and Exit 41 and work at Ball State University.
The prefabs are sourced in northern Indiana, in places like Elkhart--the "RV Capital of the World"--where one manufacturer, Skyline, built 890,000 houses since 1951. The city of Middlebury is there too, and so are places with fun names: Goshen, Wakarusa, Nappanee, Shipshewana.

History: cheap gas + good roads + discretionary income + easy credit + white flight =ed boom times in prefab sales. Recent history: candidate Obama came for street cred with working class. Today in Elkhart: the nation's highest unemployment at 15.3%, msnbc's The Elkhart Project "to provide perspective on the national recession," and POTUS returns.

Tags: economicimplosion, nojobs, Mexicandrugcartels, Amishworkforce, thatgreatsuckingsoundyouhear.

















About the photos. Inspired by Chris Jones' "St Ives by chance" and John Cage's 4'33". A house approaches, camera up, viewfinder look, shutter push, then gone. Three seconds. Converging high speeds, closeness, and one-eye-on-prefab-one-eye-on-traffic bring blurs and out-of-frame experiences. Houses are backgrounded as overpasses, yellow lines, asphalt, guardrails, vehicles, dirty windshield, weather, changing seasonal landscapes, signage, and traffic accidents come into view. January to July 2009.

For more prefabricated houses rolling in Indiana, see this onesmallproject.flickr set: 69 preBUILTS.

1 comment:

Brett Bloom said...

Wes,

This collection is really great! Thanks for posting these images.

Brett

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