In the spirit of Halloween, this homework is on spirit photography. We briefly touched on the beginnings of spirit photography in class with William Mumler’s photograph of Mary Todd Lincoln with the ghost of Abraham Lincoln. The contemporary photographer Shannon Taggart has photographed Lily Dale, the world’s largest Spiritualist community in western New York. Taggart gave a talk here at CityTech last year on her work. Her photographic projects often focus on alternative types of religious experience. Taggart’s photographic work includes a project on the Haitian practice of Vodou right here in Brooklyn.
We have discussed the difficulty of producing religious imagery via photography (for example, look at F. Holland Day). For this post, I would like you to read an article of Taggart’s work in Slate and consider the difficulties of documenting spiritualism or any religious experience. Do you think such documentation possible? valuable? intrusive?
Click here for the article on Shannon Taggart’s photography “The World’s Hub for Spiritualism in a Tiny New York Town.”
You can explore her photography on her personal website shannontaggart.com here.
To complete this homework assignment, note whether you Post or Comment. For Homework #3, Hearts and Clubs will submit a Post and Diamonds and Spades will Comment (choose any of your classmates’ posts to comment on).
Homework #3 is DUE by Thursday October 29th. Clubs and Hearts Post, Diamonds and Spades Comment. Please note your blog group! Email me if you forget.