“About the Cover; David Maisel’s Terminal Mirage.” May/June 2005. Rexer, Lyle.
“When Carleton Watkins made his photographs of gravel quarries, mining operations, and sawmills in the 1860s, America was a larger place, and these interruptions of a previously pristine nature were confirming signs of a great errand into the wilderness. when photographer David Maisel flew over Mt St Helens in 1983, several years after its eruption, with his teacher Emmet Gowin, he must have felt Watkins’ awe in the face of nature’s shaping power. But the sense of celebration soon yielded to horror, fascination, and fear. The more time Maisel spent aloft, the more his view revealed that what seemed to be the signs of successful enterprise had become vast scars, of open-pit mines, polluted lakes, and military test sites. Maisel set out to document this manmade devastation from the air In a decades-long project he calls Black Maps. Maisel is among a group of American photographers- including Edward Burtynsky and Richard Misrach- who have made their art careers out of environmental catastrophe.”