The New School Archives Digital Collections

Parsons School of Design MFA Photography program theses2019 (PC020403.15) ➔ Chaco Reimagined


Related people/organizations

Dawnja Burris (photographer)
Parsons School of Design. Photography Department. (sponsoring body)




Within Chaco Canyon National Historical Park, located in the Four Corners area of Northwestern New Mexico, the landforms and architecture inhabited by the Ancestral Puebloan people (formerly termed the Anasazi) have been mapped and photographed extensively since the mid 19th century.

These photographic selections are from a series produced during my artist’s residency at the park in April, 2019. They reference the historical means of photographically documenting the site and are strategically constructed using photographic transparencies to reveal the technology utilized and to complicate the notions of time and meaning inherent in their views.

The transparencies as apparatus pair with that of the camera, producing a different optical arrangement and function both as metaphor and medium. The resulting doubled images produce a wavering, non-static result suggesting the time that has passed (and will continue to pass) since the inhabitation of the site, and the number of ways it and life within it may be conceived.



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