New York

Ramak Fazel

Storefront for Art and Architecture

The story of “49 State Capitols,” Milan-based photographer Ramak Fazel’s first exhibition at the Storefront for Art and Architecture, begins with a suggestion from his mother. Fazel’s childhood stamp collection was stored in the attic of her home in Fort Wayne, Indiana, she reminded him while he was there visiting in 2006—why not do something with it? He retrieved the collection and, struck by a page of American state flag stamps, conceived of the odyssey that would take him 17,345 miles over seventy-eight days in the summer and fall of that year.

Born in Iran but raised in the Midwest, Fazel had turned to philately to educate himself about his adopted country; at thirty he set off to see it, stamps in hand. He purchased a used camper and plotted a course to forty-nine of the nation’s capitol buildings (he ran out of money before he reached Alaska). The show included ephemera from the

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