Editor’s Note: The essay below was written in 2001 and appears in the self-published book, Through Our Eyes: A Tapestry of Words and Images in Response to September 11. Printed and distributed in 2002, the book was the result of an independent, volunteer documentary project organized by a journalist and several friends. The author’s bio was written in 2002 and has not been updated.
Los Angeles, California
Scientist/photographer David Scharf peers deeper than most into the intricacies of life. His vibrant scanning electron microscope images have earned great acclaim for their artistic content and technical precision. Beyond his own book, David’s work has been featured in numerous publications, such as Time, Life, Harpers, National Geographic, Discover, Scientific American, among others. His images were also showcased in an IMAX film and have been exhibited at art and science museums. In 2001, he won an Emmy for his work on a National Geographic television film.
This past year, David has been looking at dust from the collapsed World Trade Center. This stunning yet eerie photograph features dust particles magnified 450 times. The predominant matter in this microscopic landscape is ash and fiberglass, suggesting much of the material contained within the towers was incinerated. Even at this level, there is no escaping the magnitude of the calamity.