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Running the Numbers – An American Self-Portrait by Chris Jordan

”This new series looks at contemporary American culture
through the austere lens of statistics. Each image portrays a specific quantity of
something: fifteen million sheets of office paper (five minutes of paper use); 106,000
aluminum cans (thirty seconds of can consumption) and so on. My hope is that images
representing these quantities might have a different effect than the raw numbers alone,
such as we find daily in articles and books. Statistics tend to feel abstract and
anesthetizing, making it difficult to connect with and make meaning of 3.6 million
SUV sales in one year, for example, or 2.3 million Americans in prison, or $12.5 million
spent every hour on the Iraq war. This project visually examines these vast and bizarre
measures of our society, in large intricately detailed prints assembled from thousands
of smaller photographs.

My only caveat about this series is that the prints
must be seen in person to be experienced the way they are intended. As with any large
artwork, their scale carries a vital part of their substance which is lost in these
little web images. Hopefully the JPEGs displayed here might be enough to arouse your
curiosity to attend an exhibition, or to arrange one if you are in a position to do
so. The series is still in its early stages, and new images will be posted as they
are completed, so please stay tuned.” ~cj, January 2007

For more information and more examples of Chris Jordan’s
work visit

Handguns, 2007

Digital C print, 72×94″

Depicts 29,569 handguns, equal to the number
of gun-related deaths in the US in 2004.

Partial zoom

Detail at actual size

Posted by: marteous& Posted by: rikoko


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