In 1998 I was asked to participate in the "National Millennium Survey," to join three dozen American photographers and writers in producing work that spoke of America at the turn of the millennium. At the time, my eight year-old son and his friends were constantly playing "GameBoy," bringing this small, hand held device with them whenever and wherever they could. They seemed capable of focusing on GameBoy in any setting, and over time developed extraordinary dexterity and skill at these games. If childhood play is in part a preparation for relationships and activities later in life, what were these eight and nine year-old boys preparing for?
What started as a few photographs of a small group of boys engaged in the same activity became a two-year collaboration with my son to see how GameBoy fit into his life. By 2000, as my son began to transition into adolescence and out of playing GameBoy, I had started to pay more attention to the larger phenomenon of America's growing use of portable electronic devices. Now, I wonder what these photographs are predicting as we transition into our own national electronic adolescence.
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