View of a shopping center
Retail photography and scenery. A journey told through images and window displays

Drew Harty is an American photographer who has travelled over 13,000 miles from Missisipi to the West Coast of the United States to complete a national survey of retail landscapes and the impact that window displays have on the Metropolitan Landscape

Photographing retail landscapes in hundreds of cities in 46 states gave the photographer a unique perspective on the impact of urban planning and design in America. In 2013, he travelled over 13,000 miles to photograph retail landscapes, from the Mississippi River to the west coast and back

Photograph of a trade route

In 2016, he received a grant to photograph in the southeast and complete a national survey of landscapes. Before this trip, you couldn't imagine the visual impact on the American landscape of 14.534 Dollar General stores, 14.027 McDonald's, 26.982 Subways or 5.358 Walmart. Seeing the number of franchises accumulating, day after day, as he crossed the country for months, from one city to another that was a shock

Photograph of a trade route

The difficulty of photographing was not in deciding where to photograph but in deciding not to photograph while moving from one area of retail development to the next. He wondered what we had sacrificed for the sake of the mountain of the discounted goods on display. What did the Americans lose when the cities from Maine to California look increasingly the same. Retail landscapes are changing our standards, they are altering our expectations of what a community should be, no matter where we live in the world

Photograph of a trade route

After this trip the Photographer concluded that his consumption choices have been changed forever, not because of the influence they have on his portfolio but because of the repercussions that these types of franchises and their development have on the daily and worldwide scene

Photograph of a trade route

The sum of our consumption choices expresses how we value natural resources, human resources and the landscapes we call home.  Drew Harty hopes that through his photographs of retail landscapes we can increase the awareness of viewers' imagination and encourage them to make more responsible choices

Photograph of a trade route

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