Exposure | Foreign Statues

Ryan Quan
Prague, Czech Republic

After spending my first year of college at NYU London, I decided to spend three weeks of my summer traveling around Europe by myself.  I flew from country to country, lugging around two bags and a camera, and attempted to see as much as humanly possible in the two or three days I had in each city.

Because of the language barrier and my busy schedule, a majority of the three weeks was spent being a silent observer.  With minimal human interaction, I found myself drawn to the environment around me, especially the architecture.  I began to analyze the different statues I encountered in each country, realizing that one thing — among many — that Europe does infinitely better than America is statues. Deprived from sleep and attention, I found myself relating to these eternally silent, distant human replications.  I saw people passing these statues, taking quick, blurry pictures for their Snapchat or Instagram.  I decided to start taking pictures of these statues differently.  I stopped taking pictures for myself and instead started taking the pictures for the statues.

It gave me some purpose as I wandered around foreign countries, not knowing anyone, myself included.

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