>Intolerable Beauty

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Intolerable Beauty: Chris Jordan Photographs American Mass Consumption

Photographer Chris Jordan describes the photos in his series “Intolerable Beauty: Portraits of American Mass Consumption” as his “first foray into being an engaged artist.”
Cell phones #2, Atlanta, 2005

1. “The idea [behind this series] was to capture the scale of [our] mass consumption. It was the first time I stood in front of piles of the detritus of our mass consumption.” “Cell phones #2, Atlanta, 2005″

Cell phone chargers, Atlanta, 2004

2. “Initially, I thought I was seeing the scale [but] in the end, I realized this was the tiny tip of the iceberg.” “Cell phone chargers, Atlanta, 2004″

e-Bank, Tacoma, 2004

3. “It was interesting to see the limitations of this series and the photos. [Mass consumption is an] invisible phenomenon– there’s no one place I can go to capture it all.” “e-Bank, Tacoma, 2004″

Crushed cars #2, Tacoma, 2004

4. “There’s a hierarchy of activism…. What my work is about to feel these issues myself…. A large part of change is acknowledging feelings we have and connecting with these issues.” “Crushed cars #2, Tacoma, 2004″

Oil Filters, Seattle, 2003

5. “[All this waste] is something that’s sort of kept hidden.” “Oil Filters, Seattle, 2003″

Spent bullet casings, 2005

6. “I almost felt like a spy. I felt like this was something people needed to see.” “Spent bullet casings, 2005″

Circuit boards #2, New Orleans, 2005

7. “80% [of the photos in this series] were ’straight’ photos. As I ran up against these limitations of photography…I started arranging the subject.” “Circuit boards #2, New Orleans, 2005″

Circuit boards, Atlanta, 2004

8. “I also felt like I aged about five years during this series. Virtually all the photos…required that I trespass. I’d go ask [for permission to photograph these piles of waste] but I’d get all these vague excuses: Homeland Security, insurance regulations…. I think it was really a weird fear about photography and exposure [even though] I offered veto [power], showed them my previous work, and explained I didn’t name individuals or companies. This was about [documenting] a nationwide, cultural phenomenon.” Circuit boards, Atlanta, 2004″

Having run into the “limitations of photography,” Jordan initiated a new series, “Running the Numbers,” a set of digitally constructed photographs that represent the actual quantities of consumed items. “I’m almost done with this series,” he says at the end of our interview. “I’m hoping to return to a photographic project. I’d like to be a photographer again.”

To learn more about Jordan and his work, please visit his website.

All photos courtesy of Chris Jordan.

>Top Cities With the Most Job Postings Per Capita

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Rankings Second Quarter 2009
50 most populous metro areas ranked by job postings per capita.
Rank (Last Qtr Rank) Metropolitian Area Job Postings Per 1000 People
1 (1) Washington, DC 133
2 (2) Baltimore, MD 90
3 (3) San Jose, CA 80
4 (7) Austin, TX 56
5 (6) Hartford, CT 54
6 (9) Seattle, WA 53
7 (8) Salt Lake City, UT 52
8 (11) Denver, CO 50
9 (5) Boston, MA 49
10 (4) Las Vegas, NV 49
11 (15) Charlotte, NC 49
12 (10) San Francisco, CA 47
13 (12) Milwaukee, WI 41
14 (30) Atlanta, GA 40
15 (13) Cincinnati, OH 39
16 (14) Oklahoma City, OK 39
17 (22) Orlando, FL 37
18 (23) Richmond, VA 37
19 (24) Jacksonville, FL 36
20 (16) Dallas, TX 36
21 (18) Phoenix, AZ 36
22 (19) Columbus, OH 36
23 (21) San Antonio, TX 36
24 (20) Tampa, FL 35
25 (31) Kansas City, MO 34
26 (34) Indianapolis, IN 34
27 (33) Sacramento, CA 34
28 (17) San Diego, CA 33
29 (27) Philadelphia, PA 33
30 (35) Nashville, TN 33
31 (29) St. Paul, MN 33
32 (26) Louisville, KY 33
33 (40) New Orleans, LA 32
34 (25) Houston, TX 32
35 (28) Cleveland, OH 32
36 (37) Providence, RI 31
37 (36) Pittsburgh, PA 31
38 (38) Memphis, TN 30
39 (32) Virginia Beach, VA 30
40 (44) St. Louis, MO 30
41 (39) Portland, OR 30
42 (42) New York, NY 28
43 (41) Birmingham, AL 28
44 (46) Chicago, IL 27
45 (43) Riverside, CA 26
46 (45) Los Angeles, CA 24
47 (47) Buffalo, NY 24
48 (48) Rochester, NY 19
49 (49) Miami, FL 17
50 (50) Detroit, MI 15