'The images in this book ask that we follow the quiet journey of Robert Leslie and his camera through a land where the notion of the unstoppable economy, a land of plenty, the ‘American dream’, is brought into question. Is this moment in history a major setback or is this the beginning of the inevitable decline of an empire….' – Edward Burtynsky
Robert Leslie first visited the United States as a child in the late 1960s. There seemed to be an endless horizon of energy, enthusiasm & growth. Economically, at that time, the US was more productive per capita than any other country in the world and one of the major drivers of that economic certainty was the SunBelt, stretching across the south of the country from Florida to California.
For this project, undertaken over a three year period, Leslie travelled more than 10,000 miles on the road from Florida to California – a journey that dramatically reshaped his perspective of the country. He chose a route through the Sunbelt at the height of the economic recession. Repossessed homes and men with “will do anything for money” signs told the tale. As his journey progressed, the impact of hurricanes, forest fires and drought became increasingly apparent. This entwining of the financial crash & natural disaster had shifted the once promised Sunbelt into the Stormbelt.
The recipient of numerous awards, Robert Leslie’s work is in private collections and institutions in Europe and the USA. 2013 has seen his work selected in the Judges Choice section of the Syngenta Award and nomination for the prestigious Prix Pictet. From 2005-12 he was chief photographer for the www.ted.com organization and the World Science Festival. He has been featured by Apple, Leica and Elinchrom lighting in case studies pushing the boundaries of their products, and is actively involved in educational projects with the Bezos Foundation, Positive View Foundation, and the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.
Hardback, 120 pages
240mm x 300mm