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September 22, 2007

Photographer Chris Jordan - Running the Numbers

Photo of Chris Jordan photographerBill Moyers interviewed photographer Chris Jordan on the PBS show "Bill Moyers' Journal" last night.

A long-time photographer, Jordan once took a photo of some garbage that he was surprised to find many people described as "beautiful". This response lead Jordan down a path that ultimately arrived at his "Running the Numbers" series of photographs that visually represents the statistics surrounding American's consumption and social ills. Jordan builds his photographs like pointillist composites using repetitions of the subject matter.

If you didn't get to see the show, you can view it online here: Chris Jordan Running the Numbers Interview with Bill Moyers. Well worth the 10 minutes, in which Jordan demonstrates he is not only a great photographic artist but also incredibly articulate.

And here's an example of Chris's work taken from his website This piece depicts the 106,000 aluminum cans used in the U.S. every THIRTY SECONDS! OMG! In this piece seen in its totality, it resembles a work by the impressionist painter Seurat. Partial and full zooms show how the photograph is composed. My mind boggles to think how long it took Jordan to compose this artwork.

Cans Seurat, 2007 by Chris Jordan
Cans Seurat, 2007 by Chris Jordan

Chris Jordan Cans Seurat at partial zoom

Chris Jordan Cans Seurat at full zoom

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