Tuesday, Sep 14, 2021 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
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Property Rights examines the American government’s ongoing legacy of property confiscation, and how communities gather to resist, pondering questions; who owns the land, by whose authority, and with what rights? Epstein began his latest series in 2017 at Standing Rock, where thousands protested the installation of the Dakota Access Pipeline on Sioux land. Over four years, he charted other contested lands from Pennsylvania and Hawaii to the Mexican border, as well as land loss through wildfires and flooding due to egregious environmental negligence. In keeping with Epstein’s 50-year exploration of American life, Property Rights questions the relationship between institutions, civil rights and the rights of nature itself. Acknowledging our bodies and lives as our most fundamental property, the book examines other forms of trespass and destruction in an elegy to the Tree of Life Synagogue massacre, and in photographs of Black Lives Matter protests during COVID-19.
Between 1978 and 1989, Mitch Epstein made eight trips to India and shot tens of thousands of photographs. He also made three films there with his Indian wife, director Mira Nair. The photographs in this book are the result of Epstein’s unusual dual vantage in an extraordinarily complicated culture: through his Indian family life and work, he was both an insider and outsider. Epstein was able to enter a wide swath of subcultures that included a striptease cabaret, the Royal Bombay Yacht Club, Bollywood movie sets, an old-time Punjabi wedding band and religious pilgrims both Muslim and Hindu. In India is the fruit of Epstein’s deep and extended experience of India, where separate worlds converged.