The landscape in and around Ajo, Arizona provides a valuable lens with which to examine the way people and place interact. Ajo’s geography dictates its industries. With the closure of the mine, Ajo’s main sources of income have become border patrol and retirees. Ubiquitous green and white SUVs patrol for desperate migrants in the same desert which provide winter homes to the RVs of those who migrate from the north. Conversely Ajo’s landscape is dramatically altered by the presence of the mining operation which once sustained it. It has become like a immense apocalyptic and alien sculpture garden. Waste rock heaps and tailing piles tower over the desert as artificial mountains. The vast lilac pit (1500 feet deep) acts as an inverted monument to man’s industrious nature, tenacity and hubris. It will mark this place for perhaps a million years.