Although it’s not even been a year since Donald Trump was elected as president, with his questionable decision making hitting headlines daily, it feel like a lifetime. But behind the man, the quiff, and the jokes is ultimately a nation heartbreakingly divided.
This “emotional climate” is documented poignantly by photographer Chris Maggio in his series, Bored on the 4th of July, a reflection of America “in the wake of the disastrous 2016 election,” he tells It’s Nice That.“My intent was for the series to be an uneasy emulsion of both documentary and opinion that explores the malaise of a country sinking deeper and deeper into a state of hyperbole and paranoia on both sides of the aisle,” the photographer explains.
Chris’ intent is successfully carried out in a mix of photographs that are woeful, but in parts are actually quite humorous, with a sarcastic undertone throughout. The red, white and blue colours of the American flag are often a base for the images making regular appearances. For instance, a bumper sticker stating “these colours don’t run” placed above an image of the flag is positioned next to a painting of the flag in a window caught in the rain, contradicting the previous statement.
Created by travelling across the northeast of the USA, Chris “wanted to find and create imagery that illustrated the confusion and polarisation of a country where everyone has a differing opinion of what it means to be an upstanding American,” he says. “However, on the path of seeking a clear answer to what will unify us as a population, I fear that this is only a glimpse of the very serpentine road ahead.”
Completing the project “in the wake of such a divisive event,” allowed Chris to spot a wealth of content. Therefore the images appear very natural, you can imagine Chris travelling, spotting something that in context with the project proves a point, and when curated together his idea, and feelings, are palpable.
About the Author
Lucy joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in July 2016 after graduating from Chelsea College of Art. In October 2016 she became a staff writer on the editorial team and in January 2019 was made It’s Nice That’s deputy editor. Feel free to get in contact with Lucy about new and upcoming creative projects or editorial ideas for the site.