The University of the arts

Menu

In The Spotlight

Jordan Baumgarten, a member of the UArts Photography faculty has been working on a project over the past 5 years called Slow Blink Open Mouth to be published as a book by GOST this fall.

From the artist:

Slow Blink Open Mouth is a glimpse into the rampant chaos and lawlessness present in a place with no oversight. With that apparent lawlessness, chaos is inevitable; that chaos is now evident, with the city of Philadelphia in the grip of the opioid crisis. In this world, private moments are public, animals and humans roam free, fueled by id, and always, somewhere, there is a fire burning. My neighborhood, Kensington, happens to be the nexus for those in and around Philadelphia seeking heroin, and all that it entails.

The title Slow Blink Open Mouth comes from the pictograph illustrating “severe pain” in hospital universal pain assessment tools. I discovered this while in the hospital after someone stuck me with a used heroin needle during my work on this project. The title is also meant to convey being stoned or astonished, as well as the feelings of bliss and ecstasy. At its core, the project is about the opioid epidemic and its supporting addiction-based economy. While all the photographs were made in Philadelphia, the project is not about that specific place. Rather, the city serves as a microcosm to discuss issues tearing apart the fabric of our social landscape.

We are excited to let you know that GOST will be publishing a book based on his project, Slow Blink Open Mouth. Images are available through the artist’s website to support the project publication.

Share |