Threat of Displacement in Sunset Park

Today marked my second visit to Sunset Park in Brooklyn. This semester I am going to explore how gentrification and development are impacting this largely immigrant neighborhood, particularly focusing on the ongoing development of Industry City. Having visited two weeks in a row now, I’ve noticed a sense of conflict I feel, particularly viewing this area from behind the lens of my camera. While I’ve been reading several articles about displacement in Sunset Park and the larger implications of gentrification and development, I’ve found it difficult to show this through photography. I think this is for a couple of reasons, one being that spaces like Industry City are often designed to be aesthetically pleasing, so trying to capture the threat this development poses in a photograph is challenging. I think the larger issue though, is that the struggle that comes with gentrification and development is largely a human one, and photographs of buildings don’t necessarily inspire a sense of humanity or empathy on their own. This is akin to the photo of the two chickens we looked at in class. To understand and share the story of development in Sunset Park, I will need to speak to people who live and work there. Their experiences and concerns are what makes this location one in precarity.

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~ by kaylabullwinkel on February 17, 2019.