Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States
I am working on a photo documentary project about people who attend conventions that I call ‘The Conventioneers.’
I love people who bask in the fringes of America. People who interest me grasp at the skirts of eccentricity. Subjects mirror Abe Lincoln at the Abe Lincoln lookalike convention. They hear the cry of hucksters and hustlers and adorn themselves with ostentatious outfits of $20,000 mink coats and gold-encrusted chalices at the Pimp and Prostitutes "Players Ball.".
For conventions are pulsating living time frames of eccentric individuals who are living out their fantasies dreams and aspirations. They are for the most part undocumented. It is a microcosm of American society. It is an alternative to the daily process of living. Because the world becomes a more isolated place in which people communicate by email and text message, the gatherings of people of similar tastes, ideals and styles is more important than ever.
In the end, my intention is to identify Conventions as an organized topology of cultural values where good taste, the need for excess, and irony coexist. It is an event where individuals come not only to exhibit and sell products- from sex to funeral headstones- but to exhibit themselves. They therefore become a place with its own set of underground yet manufactured rules and regulations costuming and language.