“Library of Dust,” a series of large scale photographs from 2005 by David Maisel is on view at the Von Lintel Gallery in NYC.
David Maisel, Library of Dust 103-566, c-print, 2005.
His subjects are the canned remains from the formerly named Oregon State Insane Asylum. The patients became part of this unusual collection because their ashes were never claimed by family or friends. In the mid 1970’s the canisters were placed in an underground depository which flooded repeatedly over the past several decades.
David Maisel, Library of Dust 1834, c-print, 2005.
The response of the copper containers to the water formed some astounding chemical reactions. Metaphorically, it is as though the inmates of the asylum, forgotten by loved ones have reasserted their individuality in an attempt to be once more remembered. The size of the prints amplifies the anomalies accomplishing a ghostly impression of portraiture.
David Maisel, Library of Dust 1470, c-print, 2005.
Library of Dust
21 January – 27 February 2010
Von Lintel Gallery
This is wonderful. Thank you.