In 2008, Spring Hurlbut completed her first video titled Airborne. In this video she is shown opening six boxes containing the ashes of six people, including those of her father. The artist received permission to work with their cremated remains directly from their respective families. The opening of each box is preceded by the first name of each individual appearing on the screen. Both representative of the person and the life lived, yet very evidently not that person, the ashes are, "a complex and freighted medium." Showing swirls of powdery ash, ascending against a black background, the video creates,
"...a visual language that occupies the aporia surrounding death in Western culture. It speaks to something that Buddhists have believed for centuries; that death is one of the most important moments in life, the moment of freedom and transformation."
Text in italics, quote by Cynthia Hammond PH.D. Art History, Concordia University