"There were small knots of men everywhere on the site - waiting for heavy machinery to pass at a crossing, or hanging around next to the raking fields, or standing by a makeshift shrine - and many of them were eager to tell you what had happened to them, or what they were thinking, or how they were feeling."
- Joel Meyerowitz on his experience photographing the destruction caused by the collapse of the World Trade Center.
This extraordinary archive of pictures is the only existing photographic record of Ground Zero after the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11th 2001. Fenced off and classified as a crime scene, the area was closed to all photographers, and only scant information was available about the activites in the guarded enclosure that became known as the "forbidden city."
Through sheer persistence involving almost daily acts of resourcefulness and defiance, Meyerowitz became the sole photographer to have continued access to the site and describe its transformation over the next nine months from a place of total devastation to cleared bedrock.
The photographs serve not only as an elegy to the thousands who lost their lives, but also celebrate the tireless effort and bravery of the thousands of police officers, fire fighters, construction workers, engineers and volunteers who assisted in the clean-up process. Images of physical ruin and emotional strength place on the record the moments of courage, compassion and solidarity that occurred there.