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Apartment 304, 398 Main Street

Mitch Epstein

This photograph is part of Mitch Epstein’s series Family Business, which traces the decline of Holyoke, Massachusetts, a once-prosperous industrial town, through the example of his own family’s waning fortunes. The series becomes a metaphor for many small American towns in flux, depopulated and with jobs in short supply.

Walls darkened by soot, Apartment 304, 398 Main Street shows a building belonging to Epstein’s father that was condemned after a fire. Yet the image also forms a stunning still life—an emblem of the fragility of life.
MEDIUM Chromogenic photograph
DATES 2001
DIMENSIONS 50 x 60 in. (127 x 152.4 cm)  (show scale)
SIGNATURE Black marker on the bottom verso: "ME Apartment 304, 398 Main Street 2001 AP 1/3".
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CREDIT LINE Gift of Richard J. Kempe, by exchange
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CAPTION Mitch Epstein (American, born 1952). Apartment 304, 398 Main Street, 2001. Chromogenic photograph, 50 x 60 in. (127 x 152.4 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Richard J. Kempe, by exchange, 2009.56.2. © Mitch Epstein
IMAGE overall, 2009.56.2_PS6.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2012
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