Bunny Smedley's post on Edward Burtynsky reminded me of an art book I was after a while ago and never got round to getting, called Oblivion, by photographer David Maisel.

If I was a city banker, I would absolutely LOVE to have a pair of these huge pictures on the wall behind my massive power-desk. They are so simple (just negatives of aerial photos of Los Angeles) yet they manage to capture (to me) a sense of decaying Gotham; Cold War-era reconnaisance photographs of a post-apocalyptic city blanketed in drifts of poisoned ash (they made me think immediately of McCarthy's The Road) or a spreading cancerous virus seen through an electron microscope. To look at them makes one feel guiltily implicit in the dirty grubbing impact of humans on this planet, yet also alienated and observed, and aware of how very tiny and vainglorious we are as individuals.


Kevin Musgrove said...

Excellent photos. Thanks for pointing us their way.