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Notification xiiiEnlarge image

Notification xiii, 1996, printed 1998

Arnaud Maggs
Canadian, 1926 - 2012
dye coupler prints (Fujicolor), laminated to plexiglas
Printed by Toby Maggs
3.23 x 12.24 m (installed)
Purchased 1998
National Gallery of Canada (no. 39759.1-192)
© Arnaud Maggs

192 images of antique registered envelopes with sealing wax (8 vertical rows of 24 photographs across)
"Notification xiii" comprises 192 photographs of late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century French envelopes, which Arnaud Maggs discovered during visits to French flea markets in 1995. The black contour, forming an X-shape on the back of each of the envelopes, distinguishes them as mourning stationery, which was used as death notices or for everyday correspondence during periods of mourning. While each individual envelope signifies a personal experience of loss, the repetition brings the viewer face-to-face with the fundamental reality of death.

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