Born and raised in New York City, Austin Irving is an artist who graduated with a BFA from the Department of Photography and Imaging at TISCH School Of The Arts at New York University. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and museums in Hong Kong, Paris, Bangalore, California, New York, Ohio, Washington, Illinois, Virginia and New Mexico. Irving recently completed a two month artist residency at The Center For Biological Sciences in Bangalore, India. Her photographs have been featured in The LA Times, Art Ltd., Slate Magazine, The International Herald Tribune, Artillery, Wired, Architectural Digest, and at LOOK3 Festival of the Photograph. Irving currently lives and works in Los Angeles and her work is represented by Wilding Cran Gallery.

SHOW CAVES is a collection of large format photographs that explores the anthropocentric tendencies of modern tourism seen in domestic and international show caves. "Show Caves" are natural caves that are managed and modified by government or commercial organizations to accommodate tourists. The objective of this body of work is to highlight the tension that exists between the staggering natural beauty of caves and the renovations people make in order to transform these spaces into spectacular tourist attractions. These caverns have been curated to cater to both the physical needs of sightseers as well as to our collective expectation of the fantasy of a cave. Elaborate lighting, elevators, poured cement trails, even bathrooms and souvenir stands have been added so that ancient geological wonders can be accessible and marketable to a money-giving public. Are these additions acts of vandalism disrupting a delicate Eco-system for the sake of commercial profit? Or do these human interventions draw attention to the preservation of caves and make hard-to-access natural wonders readily available for appreciation?

The images included in this series were made with a Toyo Field camera on 4x5 color negative on location internationally in Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, and India, and domestically in New Mexico, Virginia, Arizona, New York and Tennessee.