Well-kept lawns, derelict coats, forgotten houses, trees whose foliage defy gravity and order; a collection of fetish objects full of illusory promises of wealth and prosperity. An archive of things/scenes, a daily portrait of the typical American middle class social landscape. In “Nothing’s coming soon” Clay Maxwell Jordan builds a narrative in which the description of the American social landscape-territory is suspended between dense representations, charged with action, and the complete absence of events. Like a sculptor, whose work appears tense in a balance between full and empty, Clay Maxwell Jordan describes the world through the contrast between images capable of different speeds.
The everyday life treated by Jordan is evocative. Looking at the photograph of a dog jumping into the illuminated space, observing the childish smudged writings of a crumpled sheet left on the concrete or the thick fog that cuts the light between the shrubs hidden in a back garden of a house, the authour proves to be able of weaving a narrative for which the ability to identify becomes the way to experience the story itself. The images, (sometimes taken with the help of the film), his subjects perfectly outlined by the light and the chromatic combinations permeate the sight of a sincere and brutal realism at the same time. Violent and cheeky, proud in his range of distinct colors, Jordan impresses the immobility of waiting in gestures, making use of a “stream of consciousness” that takes him from one subject to another.
By dealing with the necessity of a constant need for desire to affirm oneself and one’s life, Clay describes a world oriented to consumption as personal and existential realization. While shooting in the American South, he’s well aware of the Buddhist idea of suffering, closely linked to desire: the desire for something that causes fulfillment at the moment of its conquest, however creating in us a consequent sense of loss and birth of new desires and therefore always new tensions. A constant state of need from which man cannot extricate himself.
As Clay Maxwell Jordan states in the title “Nothing’s coming soon”. The book, in pale pink canvas, becomes a mortuary casket, an attestation of disillusionment, enclosing all those signs that we carry with us, and inside, as revenge of life on death itself. The shots become a still image of a time, extended, of now and always, which never seems to end and resemble itself every time, in every place and in every space. The narration continues incessantly, and then again is night, again dawn, again day, again sunset. Days flow by images, with the promise and hope of a different game from the one just had. “Nothing’s coming soon” tells a continuous contrast, the contrast between a cynical and conscious “memento mori” and an implacable and insatiable hymn to life.
Clay Maxwell Jordan is a photographer who has exhibited widely both nationally and internationally. He is a 2019 MacDowell fellow and currently resides in Athens, Georgia. His first monograph, “Nothing’s Coming Soon,” was published in February of 2019 by Fall Line Press.