BANGKOK — A stranded motorist ponders his situation. A shirtless man in a plastic chair waters his garden with a yellow hose. Bangkok buildings sizzle under the summer sun and an orange sky.
For 18 months, photographer Adam Birkan peered from his apartment’s window, sometimes for hours, to snap what he saw. The result of his patient surveillance is Hope Land, an exhibition of the U.S. street photographer’s minimalist photography in the form of random soi dogs, loitering pedestrians and city traffic.
Why Hope Land? The name came from a glowing pink sign of the Hope Land Executive Residence he saw from afar.
“From my apartment, a great expanse is laid bare before my eyes. I am too high to see sorrow and despair, and too low to see happiness. But I am just the right height to see their hopes and dreams,” Birkan wrote. “As the dogs race from alley to alley. As the people walk, and run, and wait. As the boats and cars slowly putter along, one thing becomes clear. There is an order to all of their actions, all different, but all energized by the same thing. Hope.”
Last year Birkan held All That Glitters, another exhibition looking at social and economic disparities through photography.
The opening reception runs 7pm to midnight on Sept. 2 at art-bar Jam in the lower Sathorn area. Local bands will perform live and “Hope Land” zines available for sale. The exhibition will run until September 24.
Photo: Adam Birkan / Courtesy