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16 " x 16"
Abandoned by Barbara Hirschfeld explores the nature of change as it occurs
over long periods of time when something is left to shift its original nature.
It also explores how the hand of various forces change the original nature of an object.
Ms. Hirschfeld has been exploring abandoned spaces since 1995.
Her first series focused on Gary, Indiana and the architecturally significant buildings,
the United Methodist Church, the Gary Train Station and
the United States Post Office abandoned as the city lay dying.
Where others may see only decayed, dilapidated edifices,
Ms. Hirschfeld sees creativity and life.
Abandoned spaces are not stagnant. They change and grow, through manipulation by outside sources
and by being left open to environmental forces – the ravages of time.
To those who remember and were part of the original purpose the structures may seem sad, decaying or beyond redemption.
To Ms. Hirschfeld, these buildings are urban caves and canyon's to be explored.
She relishes the exploration, examination and documentation of these spaces,
where less timid observers fear to enter.
Abandonment is one of the central themes of Ms. Hirschfeld's ongoing work and the self portrait in this exhibition.
From the abandonment we all experience as we leave childhood, through career changes, relationships, friendships.
We are always left behind or leaving.
The pervasiveness of abandonment in our society creates a struggle for balance and hope.
Still unless the ground underlying the structure is poisoned or stripped barren below the foundation
the very breakdown of structure and purpose leaves and opportunity for new growth