Lesson #1: How To Document the Dimensions of a Bomb Crater onto the Surface of New York City- Pt.2 (It’s Embarrassing)


How To Document the Dimensions of a Bomb Crater onto the Surface of New York City- Pt.2 (It’s Embarrassing)

Together, we dig- stupidly, slowly, sadly, weirdly.

While ‘teacher’ and participant dig together, a conversation/ a tutorial on citizenship as practice unfurls.

Temporarily, we ‘borrow” the surface of New York City in order to communicate, amongst other things, the scale of military bombing. The dimensions of average bomb craters from elsewhere (Afghanistan and Iraq) dug to scale in the backyard, reduced to 1/8th of their size. It’s absurd. Embarrassing, even- the paucity of our gesture and the way it begins to look, feel, and perhaps be, leisure. But how else do we begin to understand how much we do not understand—how else to begin to sense how deep and vast a bomb crater is? How else to get a sense of pitted neighborhoods? We have to dig.

The dimensions of an average bomb crater detonated by US forces in the Middle East: 72 feet in diameter, 30 feet in depth. But scale does not refer to size alone, but time. These geological upheavals are created instantaneously. To dig down thirty feet, by hand, would take weeks. Detonating? An instant.

Teachers/Participants: Sofia Gallisa Muriente, Isaac Nichols, Danyel M. Ferrari, Mary Walling Blackburn

Time elapsed: 6 hours

Depth: 4 feet

Diameter: 8 feet

June 6, 2010

By invitation of Naxal Belt in conjunction with Arts in Bushwick

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