Utopian Ruins

Utopian Ruins by Taylor R. Genovese

The Biosphere 2 habitat in southern Arizona lies coiled like a metallic snake, weaving its body of twisted metal around strutted towers that stretch out toward the sky. What started as a utopian project to test the feasibility of a closed ecological system for use in future outer space habitats, it ran into highly publicized scientific, engineering, and interpersonal problems—not to mention the bizarre fact that Steve Bannon was briefly involved after the failure of its first occupation. Today, it exists mainly as a tourist site and an ecological research lab for the University of Arizona.

Photo Contest Winners

AAA is proud to feature the winning photos from our 2019 photo contest throughout our Annual Report. We sincerely thank all photographers who submitted photos for sharing their work.

Toxic Tribute

Toxic Tribute by Richard Bargielski

The Fields Brook Superfund Site in Ashtabula, Ohio, was once one of the most contaminated waterways in the United States. Since the 1930s more than 20 different facilities have operated near the site, dumping a range of chemicals from uranium to PCBs to heavy metals such as mercury and lead. Many local residents perceive the Environmental Protection Agency as having mishandled the site, citing the cleanup as an origin point for mistrust in government, corporations, and globalization. The memories and embodied experiences of white working-class Ashtabulans with Fields Brook can help us understand the rise of nationalist populism in rural America. This photograph was taken by Ryan Cook, a community collaborator for the project.