Book of Flies

The Book of Flies (1999) is an artist’s book consisting of 10 digitally captured images, ink jet printed in black and white on Somerset paper, spiral bound. 10 pages, 8.5 x 11 inches. Each book is signed, numbered and dated by the artist.

To create this extraordinary book, Meister raised hundreds of Coffin flies (Sarcophaga Bullatta) from pupae to adulthood and, ultimately, death; embedded them in successive layers of clear silicone  and photographed them.  He then manipulated the image files digitally and ink jet printed the resulting images on etching press paper.

This is a book of contrasts between the formal beauty of composition, print quality and luxurious paper, and its ghastly subject matter. Meister is using cutting edge digital teqniques, traditional photographic processes, handsome materials and the book form, to make a suggestive, expressionist, statement.

The Book of Flies was on view in the mezzanine gallery of The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City during 2000.