Buffalo has faced a myriad of challenges over the last half-century, yet civic consciousness has remained remarkably high in spite of the region’s social and economic realities. The decline and abandonment of large sections of urban areas stands in the face of the region’s collective community spirit of resilience.  This exhibit is an examination of the long-term trends that have affected Buffalo and Western New York.  Today, the Buffalo-Niagara region is a study of contrasts and change – a region marred by the decline of the 20th century industrial economy and the emphasis on investments in suburban infrastructure.  Buffalo is the 3rd poorest large city in the country, featuring dramatic levels of economic inequality.  Despite recent stabilization and economic growth, more people leave the area to other areas of the country than move to it every year.

Nagowski’s recent work features data as the central to its composition. The data spans time and geography, and tells stories reflecting population distributions, income inequalities, migration trends, and employment metrics. Color and space form these abstracted infographics, shaping the viewers’ understanding of the material. The historical narrative of place reflects a contrast of experience revealing a myriad of trends, with every datapoint reflecting a unique story, each deserving of thoughtful reflection and understanding.