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Haunting Portraits of 9/11 Search Dogs
September 13, 2011
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Dutch photographer Charlotte Dumas has a new collection of work featuring the furriest rescue workers from 9/11. Called Retrieved, it's a series of portraits of the only 15 surviving search and rescue dogs (down from 90) who served at September 11th attack sites. The show is making the gallery rounds over the next few months, with exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles, Amsterdam and Paris.




Dumas' past work - which has been collected by Sofia Coppola and the late Alexander McQueen - features police horses in Italy, caged tigers in America, and roaming wolves in Scandinavia; her bio states that she attempts to show how "the state of mankind can be read and studied by the way we relate to animals."




In an interview with ARTINFO, Dumas said of her latest project: "I started my career portraying police dogs in my studio... when I focused on search dogs it got me curious about which ones would still be alive from 9/11. In my memory, it was the photographs of the dogs in the papers that stayed with me most."

From her website, she adds:

was intrigued by several newspaper photographs of the animals in action--a dog being transported in a stokes basket on cables suspended high over the wreckage; a dog intently searching while maneuvering over enormous bend beams; dogs receiving eye drops after and in between shifts--powerful, poignant images that stayed with [me] for years afterward. But what were the fates of these dogs once the rescue ended? Where were they now?



A book version of Retrieved, collecting images of all 15 dogs, is available through Los Angeles artist publisher The Ice Plant.


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