Photographs by Tony Stamolis.
Process Books, 2009. 136 pp., 100 color illustrations, 9x6¾".
Though it once held the promise of the California dream, inspiring the likes of Steinbeck and Saroyan, Fresno is now the butt of a thousand late-night TV jokes; it consistently comes in next to dead last in surveys of cities with a high quality of life.
This central California teenage wasteland—with an ethnically diverse population of Basques, Hispanics, African-Americans, Vietnamese, and Armenians—is home to lowriders, empty buildings, dope drops, and one of the highest violent-crime rates in the country.
It is also the birthplace of photographer Tony Stamolis, who spent six years chronicling his strange hometown. The result: a disturbing, humorous, and poignant insider’s view of a post-suburban American badlands.