The airport business park address seemed a little unlikely until I drove past a small crowd of characters swarming around a door that had only been open for 10 minutes. This had to be it.
I'm looking for a painting on canvas, I told the crowd marshall in the big floppy hat. He pointed to a few paintings in the window. No luck, but I squeezed inside anyway for a look-see.
I live for those moments when a visual field stops me in my tracks. The place was jammed with meticulously sorted piles of every sharp and pointy personal effect imaginable: bins heaped with jack-knives; nail clippers; X-acto knives; scissors or corkscrews; souvenir skinning knives from Alaska cruisers.
instead of jostling for the extreme bargains (crammed bag of scissors for $5, anyone?) I tried my best to capture photos of the all that shine, colour, pattern. The power of accumulations is one thing; when the accumulated items are seized objects that have been deemed to hold the potential of a terrorist act, that's something else. These are colour fields of this particular time and place. They raise questions of security, loss, value and even basic logic.
Beyond the seized, there was another category: the unclaimed. This is where the Lost and Not Found ends up: the sunglasses, Nuk baby spoons, strollers, neck pillows, belts, makeup bags. This stuff is not worth tracking down when you're from Seoul or San Diego but the arrangement of some of these categories is like no other thrift store I've been to. Jeans were laid out one on top of the other like stacked bodies. Random clothing was piled high on both sides of a tight aisle like a WWII trench. It was as if an installation artist was put in charge of inventory display.
I finally left, with nothing but a head thick with ideas.