The spirit of a neighborhood is a reflection of human nature. The pursuit of spirit makes me breathless.
The identity of a neighborhood is created by the people who came first, centuries or even decades before, searching for a chance to make a better life, to create something with their own hands, like the workers and the artists. To build buildings for shelter as well as skyscrapers built to intensify the future and surpass the past.
Tribeca has been through the worst times. When two planes hit the Twin Towers and brought the world to a halt in the span of an hour, it affected families and businesses the same. Beloved places where Tribecans gathered, the Liquor Store on West Broadway, El Teddy's on West Broadway, Socrates the Diner on Hudson St, Chanterelle Restaurant on Harrison and Hudson, Yaffa's on Greenwich, one by one they spiraled into the dust bin of time before locals realized how hard it had been for them to keep going.
Now we are hearing about the struggles of King's Pharmacy. Clearly, the so-called relief loans for small businesses isn't going to help in time for some business' who need help the most. If King's Pharmacy on Reade St dies, and the big nationwide chain drug store, Rite Aid, gets a bailout, that's our bad.
My purpose as a photographer is to preserve the memory of Tribeca. In my book, Tribeca: 09.11.01 - 09.11.11, I wrote Ï can't believe so many beautiful things are disappearing right in front of our eyes.
I hope those who have already bought a Tribeca photograph to support Sanctuary for Families have received their packages. Big thanks to everyone who jumped in heart first. Every photograph that we send out is personalized and made with love. If you haven't bought a print yet, what are you waiting for?
I am not only a watcher. Truth is, I am a cockeyed optimist. Kelli O'Hara - A Cockeyed Optimist
Kelli O'Hara singing A Cockeyed Optimist on the PBS showing of South Pacific