I thought today would be a very fitting day to talk a bit about my latest piece, 09 11 2001. So here’s some info I’d like to throw out there:
Why is this project in the form of a book?
Due to the overwhelming amount of information, I felt that the book form would help the viewer slow down and help treat each individual as just that, an individual. With the amount of victims nearing 3,000, I think it is easy to treat the day as a number. And although the number is devastating, I think it is even more powerful to consider the fact that each of these victims represents an individual tragedy. Each of these victims has a circle of family and friends whose hearts broke upon hearing the news. Through the book form, I am able to form a more personal connection between the viewer and the victims. Imagine if I had put each of these faces and names on a wall. Would you still be able to spend as much time considering each victim?
What do the pages with the numbers in the bottom right hand corner mean?
I organized the book into several parts. One of the ways it is organized is through the times of events. Mirroring the date on the cover, these pages separate the day into times. There are four ‘chapters’ (if you will): 8 46, 9 03, 9 37 and 10 03. The outline is as follows:
8 46 – Flight 11 victims
9 03 – Flight 175 victims, WTC victims, First Responder victims
9 37 – Flight 77 victims, Pentagon victims
10 03 – Flight 93 victims
Angelika, did you do this all by yourself?
Absolutely not. Thank you thank you thank you to my mom, Maggie, Maciek, Evelyn and Ania for their hole punching help. Thank you to Julie for helping me with the covers. Thank you to the Illinois Arts Council for their financial support. Thank you to numerous other people for helping me by providing me help with research, emotional support and who listened to me stress out.
What I really want to convey through the book is that 9/11 is not just a day in history. It is not just a tragic number. It is instead 2,977 tragedies. 2,977 people to whom we can relate in some way or another. 2,977 people who were just like us, doing everyday things, never expecting to become a part of history. 2,977 people who had families and friends who loved them. And then, within one instant, they became the victims. They became the headlines around the world. I want to create a connection between the viewer and the victims, even if it is a small one and even if it is only for an instant. Looking through all these faces, perhaps imagine what it must have been like to be them that day. Something I also want to convey is how not one of those victims becomes more important than another in the end. Often, we become so quick to compare or rank people, whether by their social status, economic status, race, sexuality, and many, many other ways. But in the end, none of that matters. We are all equally important in the end.