This week in honor of the city of my residence and my daughter's home town, I have been featuring Pawtucket, Rhode Island, aka the 'Bucket'. This is this the last installment in this series.
This picture was made in 1994 on Sabin Street. This is a sales yard for gravestones that sits with a used car lot in between just outside the entrance to the Oak Grove Cemetery. With a large camera I like to compose a busy picture and I try to fill the frame with a lot of nice detail. I'm looking across an assortment of used cars to the monument yard and the rather old fashioned billboards for this family business. I found it odd that even though the Grahams are no longer authorized dealers for Rock of Ages headstones they left the sign and just did a rather poor attempt to paint out the brand. It has often been pointed out to me that I have a tendency to place something that is very important to me at or close to the very center, and then frame that thing so it is very small. This is so here: the painted headstone with the word Memory on it is likely what prompted me to stop and get the camera set up in the first place. Here lies memory. I guess it has to be buried somewhere, and where better than in a photograph.
Below is an image I made 20 years later, in 2014. I wasn't attempting to recreate the scene but many of the elements repeat. The family business continues as does the used car lot. The banners are gone as is the Rock of Ages sign. The central billboard has been renewed and done over with reverse typography. The headstone of memory remains but now in a stylish and contemporary black granite. There seems to be a little less stock on hand and the vines are overtaking the crane but much remains including the akimbo telephone poles running down Sabin Street.