Abandoned Ellis Island – And How It Can Be Saved
May 8, 2012 | Source: Monroe Gallery of Photography
Perhaps Wilkes' most ambitious project was photographing the south side of Ellis Island (1998 - 2003). With his exclusive photographs and video work, Wilkes was able to help secure $6 million in funding to restore the south side of the island. Today all that remains of the past are Wilkes' haunting images. These photographs have appeared in The New York Times Magazine and have won numerous awards including American Photographer, The Art Directors Club, Applied Arts Magazine, Graphis and other industry awards. Wilkes continues to be involved with his passion for Ellis Island, working with the "Save Ellis Island" foundation. Wilkes received the Alfred Eisenstaedt Award for magazine photography, and in 2004 he received the Lucie Award for Fine Art Photographer Of The Year Award. His work is in the permanent collection of several important museum collections. Ellis Island: Ghosts of Freedom was published by W.W. Norton & Company in the fall of 2006, and was accompanied by a major exhibition at Monroe Gallery of Photography October 6 - January 7, 2007.