Monday, April 28, 2008

Room 710: A portrait

I participated in a 1 day photography workshop led by Danny Wilcox Frasier (Driftless). 11 students descended on Paquin Towers, an independent living residence for the elderly and disabled in downtown Columbia. We were each paired with a resident, and given the task of documenting their everyday lives. I spent the day with Myron Woodson, who literally sat in his chair for the almost 8 hours that I was there. To further the challenge, Myron keeps his curtains drawn, and the only light in the room came from the tungsten bulb behind his chair.
With his television, drawing pad, bobble head collection and frequent visits from his girlfriend, 52-year-old Myron Woodson has everything he needs within arms reach in his Paquin Towers apartment. A resident since 2002, Woodson moved to Columbia from St. Louis to be closer to family. Now he rarely sees his four children, and has built a life of his own that doesn’t demand getting out much. Debilitated by elephantiasis since his 30s and a recent tracheotomy, he spends the majority of his time in his apartment, where he spends most days sitting in his comfy golden chair.

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