Takeesha again: Hunts Point, Bronx

    Prev Next

    It was around midnight when I ran into Takeesha, who was high. The police were out in force; Princess was arrested earlier in the day. Takeesha thanked me for the first picture and wanted to talk about her past:

    She said her mother was a prostitute and an addict, whose pimp put Takeesha out on the streets at twelve. Takeesha had her first child at 13, the result of being raped. "I had a lot of bad experiences. I used to be with pimps. I got cigarette burns on my body. (They) beat me with hangers. They used to punish me, put me in closets with rats."

    She came to Hunts Point in 1988, and that's when she started using heroin. She used to be on methadone, but she got kicked off Medicaid, the result of some missed paper work. When I asked her why she didn't walk to Mott Haven and fix it she said, with tears in her eyes "This place is so bad and evil. It's like so simple to walk across the bridge, but it's like you can't go across, you understand? This place is evil. It's possessed. It's evil. I been here a long time. There are bad spirits here...I have seen good people. I have seen people that have family, jobs, and they come here and they get dug in, and two weeks later they living in a cardboard box."

    I post people's stories as they tell them to me. I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen.

    More on Addiction: Faces of Addiction

    2., i_still_believe_in_u, and 39 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. 2. 27 months ago | reply

      your stream is definitly one of my favorite, all your portrait gain more en more power with their description, i admire your work and how your heart make you share life of your "model"

      sorry for my english...

    2. holloway steve 27 months ago | reply

      great portrait. strong woman.

    3. Sleepless Aquarius 27 months ago | reply

      I totally agree with what 2 said. Thanx.

    4. cgullz 27 months ago | reply

      " I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen. " i hope people haven't been giving you a hard time!!

      if so, perhaps it's by those who have trouble imagining this reality. let alone imagining living it. these stories need to be told, and to be true to the people in your images, using their words is best. you do great work Chris. don't let the ankle-tappers get you down.

    5. sg410 27 months ago | reply

      beautifully done

    6. gezamo 27 months ago | reply

      Great lighting.
      Very nice portrait.

    7. lefiligree 27 months ago | reply

      what's that saying: "the monster you know isn't as scary as the monster you don't know..?" that keeps us all with the familiar, even if it's no good for us. i wonder what her "dream situation" would be.

    8. [~Bryan~] 27 months ago | reply

      love your street portrait.

    9. Chris Arnade 27 months ago | reply

      Thanks everyone. Takeesha is a real character. I have recorded a few conversations with her, hopefully I can edit and post sometime soon.

    10. brittyboop 26 months ago | reply

      this gave me tears .so sad . i wish i could be their for them all like you chris. and give them food and someone to talk to .

    11. KUHL PHOTO 23 months ago | reply

      powerful stuff.

    12. alexislrussell 21 months ago | reply

      such a beautiful lady

    keyboard shortcuts: previous photo next photo L view in light box F favorite < scroll film strip left > scroll film strip right ? show all shortcuts