Another update from the meandering world of the Ark. This fall has been full. We spent most of the time wandering through the North East, from Vermont to Maine to Upstate New York. We spent time, re-doing the living space in the Ark, updating shelves in the darkroom and I got to learn more about wood joinery and even got to use a router for the first time. After Maine, we headed through the fall orange over to Rochester, NY for a whirlwind week of interviewing and photographing students at the Monroe Community College. The following collection of images and interviews were created during a 4 day period. In the end, we put on a small pop-up exhibit in the school, each portrait paired with its audio.
After leaving Rochester, NY we spent time with family in New York and are now staying on a friend’s goat farm in Upstate New York until early January when we head into North Carolina. We are currently in fabrication mode and rebuilding the camper for our truck – welding the shell together and creating a well-ventilated but well-insulated new bedroom. You can follow along on our Instagram or Twitter. We never seem to be done with the Ark and its towing vehicle, but after every build, we seem to get closer and closer to our dream vehicle (let’s be honest, sometimes I just wish we could make a transformer).
Monica Jane Frisell and Adam Scher create work on the road in a retrofitted trailer that Frisell built in early 2021. This trailer is equipped with a full black and white photographic wet darkroom, film processing space, and digital docking station and is now lovingly called The Ark.
The Ark is fully self-contained and works off the grid. Frisell uses predominantly analog materials, shooting on an 8×10 Kodak Master field camera processing the film and prints within the Ark. Scher collects audio of spaces and people photographed, editing interviews into small vignette stories. Together they are creating an evolving and living document of our country today in their ongoing project “Portrait of US”.
To help this project grow and continue, they have a Patreon Page where folks can support them, they also have zines and prints available for sale on their store. To follow along on their social media you can follow @nomadicphotoark