Lauren Hermele

Visual storyteller, documentary photographer, editor. Summer seeker, water lover.
The Last Stop
Location: Berkeley, California
Nationality: United States
Biography: Lauren Hermele is a multimedia storyteller, a documentary and editorial, and editor. She is a photography Fulbright Fellow and was chosen by PDN30 in 2012. Lauren is an International Center of Photography’s Photojournalism and Documentary... MORE
Public Story
The Last Stop
Copyright Lauren Hermele 2023
Updated Jan 2014
Topics Abandonment, Agriculture, Animals, Community, Documentary, Editorial, Environmental, Family, Fine Art, Forest, Isolation, Landscape, Photography, Portraiture

In “The Last Stop” I document the area in and nearby Wassaic, NY—the end of the Metro-North line that connects Dutchess County with New York City. This area is full of tiny hamlets, many of which used to be hubs for state mental institutions, dairy farming, iron works, and other industries from the turn of the century. Currently, people are in a state of flux, particularly in terms of their relationship to farming, the land, and how to survive financially in an area with, for the most part, a lack of economic opportunity. While traditions and future direction are shifting, like so many agricultural areas, there are also many things that remain frozen in time. Some of the people I met were united by a drive to preserve their heritage and the fabric of small town life while others were seeking out innovative ways of reinterpreting old traditions and businesses. When turning a corner, I never knew if I would find an abandoned building crumbling in its beauty, a farm struggling to get by, or a new organic plot with enthusiastic young farmers in the field.

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