“Photography is a medium well-suited to recording and imagining the world. It is a cipher for knowledge and a precise yet malleable cataloging system that can be used to make sense of things that are not readily identifiable. And it can be terrifyingly particular in its results. Something beautiful and disquieting happens when David Maisel trains his camera on unfamiliar tracts of land that have been radically reshaped by mechanized activity and environmental neglect. The stains and detritus of mining, logging, and other similarly invasive industrial processes have been an inextricable part of the American landscape for almost two centuries. Although at ground level we may barely notice this topography of open wounds, the view from above is altogether a different matter. This has been Maisel’s principal photographic subject for almost three decades. His quest has taken him up into the air and toward the boundaries of the unknown to unveil a world that most of us have not seen before.”
—Excerpted from An Exquisite Problem by Julian Cox
Saturday, May 21, 2:30-3:30pm. The American photographer and visual artist David Maisel, whose works explores remnants of civilizations both past and present, will speak with the curator of the Photo London Talks Programme, William A. Ewing. Maisel is rightly celebrated for a number of superb books on landscape, of which the New Yorker wrote enthusiastically of his “geometric geographies.” Maisel’s most recent book is “Black Maps: American Landscape and the Apocalyptic Sublime.”
July 13, 2016 – November 28, 2016. This major exhibition is devoted to artistic portrayals of California’s most precious—and currently scarce—resource. It presents more than 70 works by eminent artists including Ansel Adams, Albert Bierstadt, David Hockney, David Maisel, Richard Misrach, and Carleton Watkins, and features images from a variety of regions around the state, during the Gold Rush to the present. The exhibition offers a compelling aesthetic experience set within debates about water that have spanned the 19th century to the present. It is also accompanied by an array of public programs designed to raise awareness and appreciation of California’s complicated water issues.
May 22 – July 3, 2016. We live in a time when our global culture has subordinated nature. It has become almost impossible to experience unspoilt land, no matter how far we direct our gaze. What remains once humanity and its thirst for action have left the stage, in search of ever greener pastures? With the first part of the project series titled ARENA, Noorderlicht casts a forensic look at the traces left behind in the landscape.