Greg Ruffing’s Revealing, Junk-Filled Photos of American Yard Sales

We Americans might be known for our rampant consumerism and our addiction to shopping, but those Black Friday massacres have a softer, more fascinating underbelly: the time-honored tradition of the yard sale. In photographer Greg Ruffing’s ongoing project Yard Sales, which we spotted over at Wired, he documents not only our insatiable lust for stuff, but the endless cycle of value inherent in all our worldly possessions, photographing the yard sales of mostly military families around the country — some who were trying to make ends meet after the recession, some who were just lightening the load before moving for another time. We’re fascinated by the sheer amount of junk in these photos — but also by the fact that any piece of that junk might soon become someone’s new prized possession. Click through to see a few of our favorites from Ruffing’s series, and then be sure to head on over to his website to check out even more of his work.

Photo credit: Greg Ruffing