Animalerie.  Photographs by Jayne Hinds Bidaut. Text by John Wood.
Animalerie.  booktease preview.


Photographs by Jayne Hinds Bidaut. Text by John Wood.
University Of Texas Press, Austin, 2004. 192 pp., 100 color illustrations, 9¾x11¾".

Titled after the French word for “pet shop,” Jayne Hinds Bidaut's moving series of ferrotype photographs pays homage to a variety of animals, both ordinary and curious, in American and European pet shops. Lizards, snakes, birds, fish, mice, pigs, and dogs peer back at the viewer, conveying a sense of both connection and isolation. Bidaut’s lyric eye and the medium's soft quality give voice to the smaller dramas of these animals’lives and daily routines. Bidaut expertly captures the edges of the animal's caged environments, including the blurred edges of the wire cage, subtle reflections in the glass, words written on the outside of the container as graphic elements, but never allowing them to dominate what the creature offers the viewer. The resulting images are sophisticatedly layered with meaning and moving at the same time. This book touches ever so lightly on the ethics of the caged condition and commodification of the animals, but ultimately resonates with a sense wonderment and empathy.

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