When I moved into an apartment in Flatbush, Brooklyn in 2015, I was decidedly an outsider. Grappling with my own complex complicity in gentrifying this vibrant community, I was determined to get to know my neighborhood and my neighbors. My daily walks with my my dog, Milo, were an opportunity to explore and talk to people. I didn’t start bringing my camera until nearly a year later, when it became a tool for sharing the beauty I was already seeing in my community every day. These images present a virtual walk through this neighborhood, as seen by a newcomer. As with most, this journey is a work in progress.
Artist: Damien Mitchell
Passing seasons at Holy Cross Cemetery
As a predominantly immigrant community, Flatbush is an intersection of different cultures, languages, music, food, and nowhere is this diversity more apparent than on the streets on a Sunday afternoon. My nearest bodegas are owned by Latino and Muslim families. The laundromat I use is owned by a Chinese family. My favorite local bar and restaurant is owned by a Jamaican family. And at the nexus of all this cultural diversity are the domino players. Nearly every day, you can hear the sound of dominoes slapping the plywood table as this group gathers for a friendly game.