Photographer Deborah Bay noticed a display at a building supplies retailer showing bullets imbedded in plexiglas. She bought some plexiglass, fired bullets into them, then photographed them in the studio with gelled (colored) lights. The photos are being exhibited
I began thinking about “The Big Bang” after seeing a sales display of bullet-proof plexiglas with projectiles embedded in it. The plexiglas captured the fragmentation of the bullets and provided a visual record of the energy released on impact. In deciding to explore this concept further, I also was intrigued by the psychological tension created between the jewel-like beauty and the inherent destructiveness of the fragmented projectiles. Many of the images resemble exploding galaxies, and visions of intergalactic bling sublimate the horror of bullets meeting muscle and bone. My interest in the project stems from America’s long-held affection for guns as part of its heritage. This seems particularly relevant in Texas which has an estimated 51 million firearms – two guns for every man, woman and child in the state. The photographic images were made in the studio – well after the gunshots were fired.
I never ceases to amaze me that to artistic types, the combination of firearms and beauty always appears as a juxtaposition, to me they are synonymous.
The photo above is of a 9mm FMJ. Here are a few more photos …
The photos will be displayed at the Wall Space Gallery, Santa Barbara, CA from July 16 to August 25.