Selections from “Black Maps” with David Maisel
American photographer and visual artist David Maisel will discuss Black Maps, an ongoing multi-chaptered series of aerial photographs of environmentally impacted sites exploring the aesthetics and politics of radically human-altered environments. Selections from this series are currently on display in the Center lounge.
Natural resource extraction and its consequences are themes central to Maisel’s photographic practice for nearly thirty years. Through aerial photography, the interlinked series Black Maps, The Mining Project, and American Mine explore sites across the United States that have been radically and irretrievably transformed by open pit mining. These images encompass documentary and aesthetic perspectives in equal measure, seeking to frame and interpret issues of contemporary landscape and culture. Literally and figuratively, the Earth’s consumption is revealed.
David Maisel was a Scholar in Residence at the Getty Research Institute in 2007, and an Artist in Residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts in 2008. He has served as a Trustee of the Headlands Center for the Arts since 2011. He has been the recipient of an Individual Artist’s Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, and an Investing in Artists Grant from the Center for Cultural Innovation. Maisel has been shortlisted for the Prix Pictet Award and the Alpert Award in the Visual Arts. He received his BA from Princeton University, and his MFA from California College of the Arts, in addition to study at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. David Maisel was born in New York City in 1961.