Noble Rot / The Work of Peter Lippmann

I am an odd collector.  Seed pods in tubes that sprout and then rot.  Withered plants.  Mouldy books with rotten pages.  Baby bird skeletons.   Dead wasps.  Rusted parts in glass jars full of water.  Photographs of people I have never known found on the street.  Bits and pieces of falling apart something-or-others.  So to find the following images….well, one can only imagine the pleasure.

Peter Lippmann’s work gives beauty to one of our greatest and most purposefully unacknowledged fears….decay.  We toss it away, bury it, conceal it, turn our backs on it and render it as other…render it useless.  One doesn’t like to think of their own interminable journey towards the inevitable decay of the body.   Whether it happens slowly over time or quickly in sudden death, humans scramble, hysterically at times, to preserve.  We even go as far as to use make up on the dead to give them that “live” look for the supposed civilized world’s open casket ceremonies.  Yet we continue to preserve, sterilize, shrink wrap, implant, photoshop, purchase and sell youth….all to maintain the extremely obvious avoidance of decay/death.  And by doing so, we altogether miss the flawed, graceful and noble state of decay.  Peter Lippmann’s work reveals this noble state and reminds us of a very important fact.   Death is real.  It comes to everyone.  These images ask us not to avoid it, but instead look at it and see its beauty.

To me these are not just images of rotting fruit, but a thoughtful, graceful and intimate symbolic display of the human condition.

– Caitlin Boyce / © 2012

Noble Rot 1

                                                                                                                                                               Noble Rot 2

Noble Rot 5

Noble Rot 6

Noble Rot 7

Noble Rot 8

Noble Rot 14

Noble Rot 16

All works posted with permission from the artist.  To see more of his work please visit his site —-> Peter Lippmann


7 comments on “Noble Rot / The Work of Peter Lippmann

  1. I’ve seen Lippmann’s work before, its oddly beautiful but still makes me cringe a little

  2. Wow, these really are beautiful. Nicely written post also, with a pertinent observation

  3. Mona says:

    Surprisingly beautiful.

  4. mobius faith says:

    Ooooh, I love these. They are wonderful. I didn’t know anyone did this sort of thing. I’ve got some fruit drying/rotting right now (grapes, bananas, cantalope) That I will photograph in the future. The grapes and bananas went pretty fast but the Canatalope is taking forever. Anyway. All that to say thanks for including these inspired images by Mr Lippman. 🙂

  5. How intriguing, these are really something to behold. Thank you for sharing this!

  6. […] Boyce wrote of these images on wildapplause March 2012 «Peter Lippmann’s work reveals this noble state and reminds us of a very important […]

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