Fittz, J Bennett; North Shore, 2006
California has often been the end point for the road trip and but is the beginning-Hollywood-of national fantasies which are distributed throughout the world. Fitts’ Salton Sea shows the polluted, over-salinated inland sea encroaching on an abandoned motel swimming pool. "The palm trees, once a symbol of endless summer, look sickly and alone."
Fittz, J Bennett; Salton Sea, 2006
Fitts engages in a conversation between photography and historical painting. Photos such as Jacksonville shot at sunset have the sumptuousness of a Claude Lorrain or John Constable painting. But their romantic sense of elegy, ruin and regret most vividly recall fellow American Thomas Cole’s cautionary Course of Empire (1836). Here Fitts’ ruins are ruins of the future. Postwar modernism sought to be ahistorical. The future was always just around the corner, always bright. In this sense, Fitts’ photographs have a bite. The images speak to an entire range of economic failures and cultural aspirations. He also shares Ed Ruscha’s and Bernd and Hilla Becher’s formalist rigor in cataloging vernacular structures. "The pictures contain such a range of contradiction and beauty that they settle in your mind like an irritant." They are difficult to forget.
Fittz, J Bennett; Huntington, 2006