bootsy holler

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about hanford declassified



Bootsy Holler is an intuitive and innovative commercial and editorial photographer.  Best known for her remarkably sensitive style of portraiture, she also works in fashion, entertainment and lifestyle for agencies, designers and music labels.


People is what Bootsy is know best for, but most often when she is displaying work in a fine art form the portraits tend to be object and oddities, places and scenes.  She loves to give feeling to the mundane and show everyone where beauty can be found.

She divides her time between Los Angeles and Seattle.


This is a collection of images is about a time, a place, a people and a secret.


Both of my Grandfathers moved to Hanford to help lay the foundation for the building of a national secret, a secret that nobody in the town or world fully understood until 1945, when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and 135,000 innocent people were killed.  It was only in the wake of those deaths that the people of Hanford learned the purpose of their town: to produce the plutonium that fueled America’s atomic bombs.


In 1943, the US Government took over 600 square miles of land in southeast Washington State for plutonium production - a process never before attempted in human history. Over the next several decades the US greatly expanded production at Hanford until 1985 when the last reactor was decommissioned. Gradually, the truth of what happened in the area has come to light, most recently in the form of declassified documents that the current administration has made public record.  Now formerly inaccessible land has been given back to the state and the site is now visible to civilians.  Hanford is the center of the world’s largest clean up project today.


As a native to this profoundly secretive and conflicted place, I grew up in a culture where larger truths were never known. And now I am drawn back to the area's many ironies, not the least of which are: the extreme beauty of the untouched land that covers an unknown and vast amount of toxic waste, a high-school mascot who symbolizes our town’s infamy (the “Bombers”), and whose own street names are a record of the theory that led to the death of so many and which also allowed our nation to change the course of history.


The work is shot with film on a medium format camera, the images run 24” x 24” in edition of 15.  The color pallet mimics the washed out desert and vintage hand colored style of the past.