An Anthropology of Abandon: Art Ethnography in recent works by Cyrill Lachauer

In this essay Arnd Schneider comments on recent photographic and film works by artist and visual anthropologist, Cyrill Lachauer – shot in the ‘waste lands’ of urban and suburban Las Vegas, and in Paiute settlements.

Departing from the original meaning of the desert as a place ‘left waste’ (a notion shared by ghost towns and abandoned film sets), and taking inspiration from the work of Jean Baudrillard, the essay discusses how a sense of ‘abandon’ is instilled into these visual works, and the human subjects they feature. Lachauer’s work is seen here as a prime example of recent moves towards art ethnography, reflecting new transdisciplinary dialogues between art and anthropology.  

By Arnd Schneider
Published May 29, 2015 12:38 PM - Last modified June 7, 2016 1:36 PM