Collections: Birds Bones and Butterflies

Leah Sobsey

Trade Cloth, 10 X 10 In. / 128 Pages / 80 Color   
ISBN 9781942084174 
List Price: $45.00 

"Sobsey’s work will remind you of the continual cycle of life and death...",
 - Musee Magazine, June 16, 2016

"...her book tells a story about America’s natural history at a time when climate change and funding cuts call the future of the our indigenous species and wild spaces into question.",
- Slate, September 16, 2016

Photographs by Leah Sobsey
Contributions by John Fitzpatrick and Xandra Eden 

Leah Sobsey works at the intersection of nineteenth-century photographic processes and twenty-first century digital technology. Sobsey photographs bird skins, bleached bones, clipped ferns, and tattered shoes, which she unearths from the dark drawers of national park museum collections. Plucked from their original context, she illuminates them with sun and light, giving them new definition. The subject matter of each series she creates is dictated by her discoveries, bridging past to present, honoring both the specimens she works with and the medium of photography.

Sobsey's project is particularly timely during this centennial year of the National Park Service, and as museum collections find themselves in a state of crisis due to diminishing funding and support. Her focus on the parks is a way of preserving these fragile specimens that represent American history. This body of work sheds light on the importance and significance of the collections and their impact on science, history, the humanities, and the hundreds of thousands of visitors who leave their footprints on our national parks.