Published by Radius Books/Nevada Museum of Art. Text by Claire C. Carter, Daniel D. Arreola, William L. Fox.
In 2007, Arizona artist David Taylor began photographing the monuments that mark the border between Mexico and the United States, aiming to document each of the 276 obelisks installed by the International Boundary Commission following the Mexican/American War. Taylor's documentation is reflective of a survey conducted by the photographer D.R. Payne between 1891 and 1895 under the auspices of the Boundary Commission (now the International Boundary and Water Commission or IBWC). While many people have photographed the border, there has been no full documentation of the monuments in more than 100 years. This volume combines Taylor's series with texts by curator Claire Carter and cultural geographer Daniel Arreola, humanizing a zone in transition in the wake of drug smuggling, immigration debates and a post-9/11 security climate. Monuments exists as a typology, the incongruous obelisks acting as witness to a shifting national identity as expressed through an altered physical terrain.
Published by Radius Books. Text by Hannah Frieser, Luis Alberto Urrea.
David Taylor's photographic examination of the contentious territory that is the U.S./Mexico border is organized around a series of approximately 260 obelisks that demarcate this boundary, and which were installed in the late 1880s. In the course of pursuing this project, Taylor earned a remarkable degree of access to U.S. Border Patrol, the agents of which often refer to their job in the field as “line work”—a term that is also an apt description of the time Taylor has spent documenting these obelisks. He has acquired a privileged insight into the intertwined issues of border security, human and drug smuggling, the construction of the border fence and its impact on the land, and has portrayed immigration issues in a way that humanizes a difficult and sensitive social and political issue. Taylor's compelling images capture the deep complexity of the politics and people of this terrain. Working the Line is accompanied by a 44-page accordion-fold booklet.