The things they carried...

By Aaron Clark
March 27, 2009

Ever wonder what happened to that retro gold-plated lighter that was confiscated by the Transportation Security Administration the last time you flew to Cleveland?Maybe you should ask Steve Maloney, a Rancho Santa Fe-based artist whose book, Banned Booty (Xlibris; out this month), catalogues the ephemera collected by airport authorities. Maloney, who bought 270 pounds of material that had been seized at California airports, has arranged pocket knives, scissors, and corkscrews into whimsical collages but also lets singular objects—such as a belt made of faux bullets—stand on their own. Sure, a deer antler may be dangerous, but an old fishing lure?A hand-painted horseshoe?Maloney questions our ideas of safety by examining the minutiae of confiscation—and the detritus that clutters our lives.