Under Wraps

A photographer questions,

Category: Arts + Events Articles


Through 12/13 Acclaimed photographer Richard Barnes blends archeology, science and architecture in his exhibit Animal Logic, which explores the natural history museum’s role as “container.” The photographs capture animal exhibits (glassed-in dioramas at the Smithsonian, the Academy of Sciences in San Francisco and elsewhere) in progress or in transition, presenting zebras wrapped in clear plastic, gazelles sitting patiently in half-opened crates, bears foraging in their faux habitat next to a guy on a ladder. The effect elicits surprise and a strange sort of melancholy—the animals’ displacement from their fake surroundings renders an odd sense of impropriety, like movie stars without their makeup.