As the World Turns by Isaac "Drift" Wright

Artist Statement

Title: As the World Turns

Year: 2020

I remember it like it was yesterday, ice clinging to the ladder I was climbing, my breath escaping in front of me as I moved higher into the night. I was atop the tallest building in New Jersey preparing to watch daybreak over the greatest city in the world. The sun came silently alongside purple, orange, pink and blue clouds. The city that never sleeps was taking its first breath. An eerie silence pervaded the air, a sign of what was to come. Within a month, COVID-19 would bring the world to its knees, New York City included. Can you feel the emptiness in the air? Can you sense the silence? I can. This was the beginning of the end, the last sunrise I’d see and photo I’d take before life changed forever. Will we ever recover? I guess only time will tell.

March 2020


Isaac “Drift” Wright is a United States Army special operations veteran who learned to cope with PTSD and depression through urban exploring and documenting cities from unseen perspectives through photography. At the end of 2020 he was arrested for his work, being subjected to four months of incarceration without bond as the government used both his race as a black man and his special military background against him. The story arrived on the front page of The New York Times on June 6th, 2021. Since then, he has grown to be one of the best selling photographers, emerging in the fine arts world and in NFT photography. His collection “Where My Vans Go” is currently the second best selling NFT photography collection in the world.

@driftershoots | @driftershoots

Drift invited Idil Dursun to TIMEPieces. Their work is inspired by the year 2020.

Slices of TIME - 2020
More Must-Reads from TIME

Contact us at