i love this photo, #22

A Teton—St. Anthony Idaho (2005) © Alexis Pike

I love this photo by the photographer Alexis Pike. Here's a description of her Human Nature series, and of this particular picture:

As a sixth generation Idahoan the landscape of the Intermountain West is an influence on my work, it’s a part of my personal history; the landscape is part of my family. I grew up in two very distinct areas of Idaho: the scenic area of Stanley Basin—which sits at the base of the Sawtooth Mountain Range—and the town of Idaho Falls—a common community that revolves around agriculture, religion and nuclear power. Growing up in these two regions gave me the perspective to understand the tourist’s attraction to the West and my own self-absorbed pride in being from the West.

The murals are often found in working class areas in route to tourist destinations. With a surge of wealthy outsiders buying the West, access is being denied to the locals but they stake their claim to the picturesque land by depicting it within their communities and I’m staking my claim as a native Idahoan by making these photographs.

A Teton was one of the first images I took in the series. St. Anthony was a natural point to begin the work, it is the town my mother grew up in and the town is close to the area four generations of my family ranched, land that is now settled with million dollar cabins. St. Anthony sits as a gateway to Yellowstone National Park, Island Park, Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole Wyoming, however the town of St. Anthony is depressed with empty store fronts, abandoned buildings, and a median income of roughly $26,000.

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