West of Meigsico, 2012
/, Dimensions Variable, Duration Variable
“The weary-hearted sailors mount the isle,
And, free from thought of peril, there abide.
Elated, on the sands they build a fire,
A mounting blaze. There, light of heart, they sit—
No more discouraged—eager for sweet rest.
Then when the crafty fiend perceives that men,
Encamped upon him, making their abode,
Enjoy the gentile weather, suddenly
Under the salty waves he plunges down,
Straight to the bottom deep he drags his prey;
He, guest of the ocean, in his watery haunts
Drowns ships and men, and fast imprisons them
Within the halls of death.”
I have always been drawn to stories of frontiers. Something about them gives me a sense of being alive. The people in them travel vast distances, across unknown lands or seas, in pursuit of a dream, wealth, revenge, love, or in desperation. The stakes were always high, the leaders always determined -- for better or for worse.
West of Meigsico is a series of photographs shot in a small, anarchist community which rests on the western edge of Appalachia. Through this series, I trace out the threads of fiction of the frontier and the sea in a modern American landscape.
- Morgan Ashcom