Some eight years ago, Photographer Jacob Kedzierski came up with the thought to make a street sign collage of his hometown of North Tonawanda, NY. The idea came to him while riding on a bike around town. That plan came to fruition. Not long after finishing the project, he moved to New York City, and it was there that he began thinking of a reprise of the same project with Manhattan as the subject.
While he had pretty much made up his mind, he was not finding the motivation to actually get the project started. While that plan was relegated to the back-burner, he casually mentioned the intention to create the Manhattan version while visiting a local print shop in the area. Impressed with the original North Tonawanda collage, the owners of the shop quickly offered a prime location in the gallery area of their store in case he ever completed the Manhattan version. With that put forward Kedzierski had just run out of reasons to procrastinate the project. This would be the third collage, the first being the one of his hometown, and a second one of quaint Lyle in Washington along Columbia River Gorge.
Shooting the material for the Manhattan project was a tedious process. Kedzierski started out on foot to walk each street starting with the 145th as he moved downward. The only help he got was from cars, subways and busses to be able to shoot the street signs above the line. It took him a total of 42 days to accumulate all the pictures using both digital and film mediums. Assembling the collage proved to be an even more mind-numbing process, according to Kedzierski. The canvas was built in 8 sections, as his computer could only handle a fraction of the whole project at a time.
The work was able to get Kedzierski enough attention to land a place at the Baboo Gallery in 2010. See the 3 collages and other works by Kedzierski in his website here.