SALVAGE is an installation of rearticulated deer skeletons. I found the bones at an active state highway roadkill dumpsite where the carcasses are discarded at the top of a steep slope above a river. The road crews cover them with wood chips and other dry composting materials. Over time the remains decompose and the hill erodes, gradually moving the bones down the grade. After a few years the bones are clean and deposited in loose soil at the bottom. I’ve been collecting/excavating bones there since 2001. Each skeleton in the herd is made up of bones from many different deer.
The skeletons of ^SALVAGE* are staged in a pseudo-scientific way. They have been assembled with anatomical accuracy as dinosaur bones are presented in the halls of a natural history museum. But this herd is homemade, not institutional. This distinction serves to memorialize these reconstituted animals. These are not just specimens. The herd is not just rearticulated, but in a sense reanimated, creating a ghostly effect that is simultaneously heightened and purposefully diminished with dramatic lighting and rough staging.
My projects, as seen in SALVAGE, are explorations of the margins where people and nature overlap. For me these points of focus are beautiful and tragic, polluted but spectacular. I look for decay and ruin in our own backyards. My projects develop close to home. I form a bond with my subject and I will study it for years. These investigations lead to a systematic and analytical processing of the matter that invariably deepens the personal resonance I have with the subject.