How can we properly acknowledge Philadelphia as our inspiration? Philadelphia has been around a long time, long before Jerome and I arrived here to make a living. This book was a long time coming. The seed was planted a while ago. We lived and worked for years in Philadelphia and as keen observers of this city we grew to love it with all its virtues and vices. It was just a matter of time before we looked at it as inspiration. It was just a matter of more time before we would recognize the complementary nature of our work. And yet we knew enough to recognize the folly of our ambition. Philadelphia, and probably any city for that matter, is just too complex to be rendered in a single book - no matter its size or scope. It lived a history deep in significance long before us and it will continue to grow and change long after we are gone. Professionals but not experts, our credentials were that we lived here as residents willing to allow our curiosity and craft to lead us to watch carefully, listed, and look at what most residents take for granted.
I learned early that stories rule our lives in the city, significant events once past are repeated to friends and family until they leave their own retold impressions on our memories. However continuously linear we expect our lives to be lived, the space of time and size of memory conspire to compress experiences into events. Photographs too, perhaps like stories, capture and represent lived experience as moments. Our Philadelphia, as is all our history, is made of these moments: photographs and stories. And in our effort to find and delineate these moments we also recognized that we approached a sense of place. Circling ever closer to a shared recognition of character our work attempts to define a place not descriptively but intuitively. The book, our effort to celebrate what we share with so many others in this big beautiful city, is perhaps the appropriate acknowledgement.
- Books Modern