The Everglades is the only ecological system of its kind. In the dedication of Everglades National Park, president Harry S. Truman stated, “Here are no lofty peaks seeking the sky, no mighty glaciers or rushing streams wearing away the uplifted land. Here is land… serving not as the source of water but as the last receiver of it. To its natural abundance we owe the spectacular plant and animal life that distinguishes the place from all others in our country.”
From 2008 to 2016, I worked on a series of photographs in the Everglades. As a native of South Florida, the Everglades is an ecosystem that has shaped my own history. The Everglades is a series of ecosystems that thrive on freshwater flowing south from Lake Okeechobee. Agriculture, urban development, and a complex series of canals have redirected and polluted the fresh water flowing into the Everglades. "Freshwater flowing into the park is engineered,” reads the brochure given to all visitors of Everglades National Park. “With the help of pumps, floodgates, and retention ponds along the park's boundary, the Everglades is presently on life support, alive but diminished." To date, more than half of the Everglades have been repurposed for urban and agricultural use. It should also be noted that the Deepwater Horizon oil spill threatens the coast of the Everglades.
By making these photographs, I hope to preserve an essence of the Everglades, a land we are rapidly losing without knowing the full extent of our loss.