Crowdfunding finished
A book on the historical phenomenon of arsenic eating. A 4-year long photographic exploration deep down into the caves of the Styrian poison eaters. An extensive cultural-historical research work on the usage of one of the most potent mineral poisons. A forgotten reality.
8,390 €
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 The Arsenic Eaters
 The Arsenic Eaters
 The Arsenic Eaters
 The Arsenic Eaters
 The Arsenic Eaters

About this project

Funding period 11/24/17 4:32 PM - 1/10/18 11:59 PM
Realisation January to April 2018
Start level 7,500 €

Your support is absolutely necessary: Without it the book production costs cannot be covered.

Category Art
City Wien

Project description show hide

What is this project all about?

Arsenic-eating was a widespread, tabooed, and after the 19th century quickly forgotten custom in the eastern parts of the Alps. The arsenic was produced by mining and roasting arsenic ore.

Hard-working folks used arsenic as a stimulans. It was fed to horses for the same reasons.

The project examines the question "In what kind of reality does arsenic-eating seem plausible?".

What is the project goal and who is the project for?

The goal is to produce a book (144 pages, 20.5 cm x 30 cm) in order to make the projects results accessible to an international public. The book consists of 2 parts: a 112 pages visual study (own photos and archival material) and 32 pages cultural historic research findings.

"The Arsenic Eaters" will be published by an independet dutch publisher for art books.

Why would you support this project?

The last time on-site research was published in English was in th 19th century. It attracted a lot of interational attention: Three times the arsenic eaters were featured in the New York Times (1854, 1875, 1885).

There still is a lot of interest: A New York-based distributor has already preordered 200 pieces of "The Arsenic Eaters". But without a successful crowdfunding the book cannot be produced.

How will we use the money if the project is successfully funded?

Without your support the book production costs cannot be covered!

The funds go directly into the book production (printing, binding, lithography, design, proofreading). A high-quality production is expensive: 1/3 comes from crowdfunding, 1/3 from public funds, 1/3 is self-funded.

Who are the people behind the project?

I am a photographer living and working in Vienna. In 2014 I started doing research on the topic and visiting historic arsenic underground mines. Due to the continuing national and international interest I want to produce "The Arsenic Eaters" in order to make my research findings accessible to the public.

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Publisher: The Eriskay Connection

"The Arsenic Eaters" will be published by The Eriskay Connection: A Dutch studio for book design and an independent publisher of art books at the intersection of photography, research, social issues and science.

Lithographer: Colour & Books

Sebastiaan Hanekroot is an expert in the reproduction of photography and art in books. He has 30 years of experience with colour, paper and printing and he will ensure "The Arsenic Eaters" excellent print quality.

Distributor: D.A.P. Books

D.A.P. is a New York and L.A. based company that distributes and publishes books on art, photography, design, and visual culture. D.A.P. has already pre-ordered 200 pieces of "The Arsenic Eaters".

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The Arsenic Eaters

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