Digital print on paper 44 in. x 75 in., 2006

A selection of images from the series Orders of Entropy, of American Civil War and WWII ships from public sources. In this series, these images are considered thermo/chemical or natural/anthropocene* structures, in different ‘states’ of extraction, transformation and dissolution within nature. They were first shown as part of the installation, Thermodynamics of Silence, at Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA, February 2006.

*The term “anthropocene” (anthrop + holocene) is related to “anthroturbation,” a term developed in conversation with the geophysicist, Paul Spudich, that has been an ongoing theme in my work:


Cities, architecture, roads and other civic constructions made by mankind of earth materials during our Epoch (the Holocene) may be considered in a geologic context as forms of ‘anthroturbation.’This term describes the disturbance, dislocation and restructuring of geologic formations and materials by human agencies into new forms. These processes have analogies in the natural world, such as: mining as erosion, transport as flow and construction as sedimentation. Likewise, the built topography of a city can be understood in geomorphic terms: streets as canyons, buildings as plateaus, sewers as caves and plazas as playas. From the artist’s statement for Holocene Terrace, in the solo exhibition, “Morphology of Change,” Lance Fung Gallery, NY, NY, 1999

Images: left column, top to bottom

Orders of Entropy: Onondaga I/James River/Brady Collection/National Archives - B6245

Orders of Entropy: Onondaga II/James River/Brady Collection/ National Archives - B40
Orders of Entropy: Saugus/James River/Brady Collection/National Archives - B203
Images: right column, top to bottom
Orders of Entropy: Mikuma/Midway/National Archives - 80G414422
Orders of Entropy: Santour/off Chesapeake/National Archives - 80G063470
Orders of Entropy: Graf Spee/Montevideo/National Archives - 306NT1290B7