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Sense of Place #1: Amy Lawless, Casa Magazines

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A new series from photographer Brad DeCecco, Sense of Place captures authors in places that hold significance to their writing selves or their writing itself.

Amy Lawless
Place: Casa Magazines, 8th Avenue, New York

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“If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you’ll never learn.”
― Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

I love to see decay and desire, regret, and hope in the eyes of man through my own too-flawed/human eyes. I love to watch the drama unfold upon the page: Who are these people in gossip/trashy magazines? They share my DNA and little else. I am like a foreign exchange student in my own country gazing upon mass media. I grasp at the meaning of the image’s capture and barely know these names. Letters arranged become words. Words become names. The arrangement of letters on the page brings me no closer to solving this estrangement. The woman who played a quirky girl on television almost lost a finger. A wealthy child of privilege will now be the wealthy child of divorced parents. This other woman will be legally wed to another human being one day soon on Planet Earth, Milky Way. Who cares???? And yet, the drama splays itself across glorious pages consumed by most/all/many—you might not desire the information described herein but your brain holds it prisoner nonetheless. Who is your god? Do you have one? Is it a character on the wall reflected? If not, maybe your television is not vivid enough. (They’ve done wonderful things with high-definition. Look into it.)  I am looking and looking and wanting and searching and I can’t find someone to worship anywhere in here. Usually this pursuit makes me more lonely. Everyday I look in the papers and in real life, magazines, the internet, and around New York City. It never goes away. I am terrified, but I can’t stop looking. When a face once perfect and preserved and upheld reproduced ad infinitum and meme’d into a sick death (or simply worshipped) turns aged or dies, we collectively reach for the [insert your own personal vice here – ice cream, gossiping, boozing, dick, running, more TV, other ritualized behavior]. Genuflect. Breathe easy now. Turn the corner, refresh the page, unplug, and perhaps even connect to a human here, near, dear, on the corner of IRL and your dinner plate. The decay, the humanity, the flaws, the living together in a sick brew inspire me to write more poems and of course gives me new shit to laugh at 24/7/365. Hit me now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now/now

Amy Lawless

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Photo by: Brad DeCecco


Brad lives in New York and photographs subjects around the world. His portrait work earned him the PDN award for the 30 Best Emerging Photographers of 2007. He also directs and acts as DP on documentary and commercial film and video projects. Communication Arts recognized his work with the Jury Prize for Cinematography. His first foray into music videos premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. His clients include: Esquire, Time, Smithsonian, The Washington Post Magazine, The New York Times Magazine, People, Forbes, Lexus, Money, ESPN and Universal Records. More from this author →