My friend Meghan’s birthday is this weekend, and like all
the other presents I have gotten most of my friends in the past I am going to give her photos. Instead of using images I have already shot, this time I went out shot something just for her. The place I chose was a place we call the “coal factory.” For those who don’t know there once was a coke plant, a type of fuel derived from coal, in the Carondelet, a region of south St. Louis. When the EPA named coke plants to have the most carcinogens of any industry the plant was closed and abandoned. It the property was put into the ownership of the city of St. Louis in 1987 and from what I’ve heard is one of the most contaminated pieces of land in the U.S. With that token and my friends impulse to explore the abandoned factory, the large decaying piece of land became a hangout for my friend Meghan. Most of the time they went at night. As of recently there has been word that the city is finally going to tear down the property. With this in mind, I came up with the idea of immortalizing the crumbling structures and filthy landscape in photos, which I will not print out and give as a present.