reviews

Paul Shambroom, B83 one-megaton nuclear gravity bombs in Weapons Storage Area, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, 1995, color photograph, 48 x 61". From the series “Nuclear Weapons,” 1992–2001.

Paul Shambroom

University Art Museum (UAM) at California State University

Paul Shambroom, B83 one-megaton nuclear gravity bombs in Weapons Storage Area, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, 1995, color photograph, 48 x 61". From the series “Nuclear Weapons,” 1992–2001.

I FIRST SAW PHOTOGRAPHS from Paul Shambroom’s “Nuclear Weapons” series, 1992–2001, in 1995, just prior to the passage of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty. Shambroom’s frank documentary depictions of places glimpsed by most of us only in nightmares—high-security military sites, including missile command centers, Trident submarines, and weapons storage facilities—made for riveting viewing, even as cold-war fears of certain doom seemed to be loosening their grip. Now, in a vastly changed cultural context, the Minneapolis-based artist’s first comprehensive midcareer survey, which originated at the Weisman Art Museum at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, brings together his nuclear series and four other major bodies of work: “Factories,” 1986–88, “Offices,” 1989–90, “Meetings,” 1999–2003, and “Security,” 2004–2007. As these photographs indicate, Shambroom

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the Summer 2009 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.