New York

James Casebere

Michael Klein Gallery

As if attempting to keep up with the current boom in prison construction, James Casebere has gradually turned from building and photographing scale models of suburban row houses, ranches, and Venetian ghetto-dwellings to constructing and photographing scale models of various structures of imprisonment—Sing Sing, the now-defunct Eastern Pennsylvania State Penitentiary, and the mobile “jail cages” once used in Georgia. But looking to Casebere’s large, atmospheric Cibachromes for an explanation of what drives our increasingly carceral society is unlikely to get you very far.

First of all, there are no prisoners here. In the earlier works depicting eerily toy like, seemingly nocturnal prison exteriors, this absence was less remarkable. In his latest suite of photographs, however, with its focus on cells, hallways, and bathrooms, Casebere’s quasidocumentary gaze is the only indication of human

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