Marianne McCarthy

light-jet print face mounted to plexi
12.5 x 39 in.

Growing up in 70’s suburbia, many of my earliest ideas about how the world operated were gleaned through television shows like Gilligan’s Island and The Flintstones… especially The Flintstones. Clinging reluctantly as most kids do to the notion that animated worlds are not physically real, I can hardly imagine how my worldview would have shifted given the opportunity to visit this place during its heyday. After the birth of my first child I began thinking more and more about my own childhood and the ideas, experiences and visual substance that shaped it. Although I have not seen a proper episode of The Flintstones in years, I still can clearly visualize the smooth, curving, thick walled structures of Bedrock. I can instantly trace in my mind, the jagged, angular bottom edge of Fred’s orange and black spotted suit, and feel the weight of Wilma’s chunky white stone choker. Like it or not, these were the kind of intense visual experiences which insinuated themselves into the foundation of my visual library. With its hot, sun-soaked palette, Bedrock City, AZ was like a perfect back lot setting for my buried visual archive to resurface. When I stumbled on it, no wonder it immediately took on a near mystical quality for me.

I experienced it with all the same reverence and sense of wonder as any of the other special places I have photographed, and I hope I have found there the same beauty and balance that connects them.

© Marianne McCarthy