It is impossible to say exactly how long the earth shook for on February 22nd 2011 as it was different for us all depending where we were in the city. However 37 seconds was a pretty good general figure according to the only reliable source I could find that would commit to suggesting a time people might have felt the shaking. 37 seconds doesn’t sound very long, until you start to count it out, one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three..... Suddenly it seems an eternity, an eternity when time stands still but the earth heaves and shakes violently.

This is a collection of portraits of 37 people I know and their stories edited down to just as many words as there were seconds of shaking. I asked them to sit totally still for a few minutes while I made a portrait of them that encapsulated 37 seconds of time, and then asked them to write, in 37 words, their experience of, thoughts from, or anything they wanted to write about those 37 seconds of shaking.

It is my hope that these unmasked, intense and revealing portraits, along with those condensed experiences of the moment our city changed forever, will remind us how effecting an event like this is.

Many thanks to the people who participated in this project, it is no small thing to expose oneself like this. These portraits are basically unposed, here the sitter is simply asked to sit, support their head, and stare into the camera.

Doc Ross

Edition of 50 artist produced books

300mm x 300mm hardcover 37 duotone images



Read Dominion post 37 portraits article "Portaits of a battered city" - Tom Cardy



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