Floating Island

Mike Osborne

Austin-based photographer Mike Osborne's Floating Island revolves around the border-straddling community of Wendover, Utah and West Wendover, Nevada. Once home to an important World War II aviation training facility, the town is now a gaming destination with five sprawling casinos. In addition to tracing this historical trajectory, Osborne's photographs reflect on the surrounding landscape's fantastical aspects. The book's title, Floating Island, refers to a small mountain located at the heart of the nearby Bonneville Salt Flats. Due to a mirage, the mountain appears to hover perpetually above the horizon line. Drawing on the phenomenon of the mirage-a real illusion-Osborne merges documentary and cinematic approaches to produce photographs that respect the particularities of the site while also exploring the myths and fantasies that it inspires.

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