Sunday, August 25, 2013

Pushing Through III

At first glance, this looks pretty common. It's just a plant growing up through a gap in the sidewalk. But if you look a little closer, you'll see what attracted me to this particular one. First, behind the plant you can see that "they" have tried to seal up the gap with asphalt. This plant is growing in defiance of not only the sidewalk itself, but the added effort to keep nature at bay. The next thing to notice is that in fact the entire section of the concrete sidewalk is being pushed up from beneath. This is probably caused by a tree root. The roots push up and crack the concrete, then seeds get blown in and there they start to grow. I often try to imagine what things will look like in 200 years. Will man have truly mastered his environment so that his walkways are no longer damaged and 'littered' with these interlopers? Or will the plants continue to struggle and push through the concrete, reminding us that we are the intruders here? We are the ones struggling against nature. We are fighting on the side destined for failure. I want to think that we can come to some form of a 'truce' where man can allow more nature into his urban environment.

I took this photo with my Yashica Mat 124G, using Kodak T-Max 100 film. Development was in Caffenol-CL with 70min stand development. Scanned with an Epson Perfection V600. See Pushing Through for an explanation of the series.