Night Trees 110th Statement In my artist statement for “Night Trees New York”, I state: “In these photos, man is evident, but not dominant. It’s not man vs. nature. It’s a merging of man and nature; there is harmony. These photos communicate my love of nature and the city – and the complexity of the relationship.” Well, the relationship between man and nature gets a bit more complex in these photos. Man is rather more dominant in this series! I set out to shoot the northern border of Central Park on a summer night. I was both excited and a tiny bit worried. Some friends had advised me to be cautious and not go alone. At first I thought, well, if I don’t feel safe shooting alone at night in the “wilds” of 110th street, I’ll just leave. Some New Yorkers will recognize my ignorance here. As I approached the park I saw many powerful police lights flashing and at first I thought there was a riot or demonstration (this being the summer of so many demonstrations about police violence). But as I reached the park, I saw there were many police vehicles but no riot or demonstration. It was strange. A large paddy wagon vehicle was parked just inside the park, along with, at various times, three to five police cars. In addition, two to three cars were patrolling the streets in the upper area of the park, just cruising around. And although it seemed to be an otherwise peaceful night in the park, with families pushing baby strollers and people walking their dogs, the police remained in the area the whole four plus hours I was there. It would have been a very peaceful, beautiful night in the park and not threatening at all, if not for the police cars. Now I have to say, the police offers were curious as to what I was shooting and were very kind to me and even gave me suggestions for other parks to shoot. Yes, I felt safer with them nearby. And besides that, I was very excited to have such exceptionally beautiful lighting! I actually couldn’t believe my luck! I was exploring more color in the dioramas of my tree photos, and I couldn’t believe the wonderful opportunity for colors produced by the flashing, cycling red and blue police lights. I felt bad that people in the area couldn’t have a peaceful night without police lights flashing for hours, but I was grateful for what it provided to me. In this series, it’s more about excitement than harmony between man and nature.