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Ghosts of the Manhattan Project

Yvonne Dalschen
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Yvonne Dalschen
This event has concluded
Dates: -
Location: 107 Projects 107 Redfern St Redfern NSW 2016 Australia
Hours:
Entry Fee: Free
Exhibition Event:
Official Opening 10/11/2022 6:00 pm
Genres: Fine-Art

After living for 20 years as a non-scientist in the science communities that were created the atomic bomb, it has become eerily familiar. During the 2020 lockdown, I was stuck in this place of guardhouses and fences, and the enormity of it all.
Coming from Germany with a very different perspective on war, the propaganda, the selective memory and atomic nostalgia had fascinated me since we arrived in Los Alamos, where people took pictures of smiling children next to models of “Fat Man” and “Little Boy.” In Oak Ridge, waning significance is fought with historic images by Ed Westcott, the official government photographer. Restorative nostalgia of heroes and victory prevail. Lately, the mostly happy, young and white “Girls of the Atomic City” were added to the canon. Victims, dissent and ongoing problems are marginalized. Comprehensive history and even contemporary science are looked on with suspicion.
Portal 4, the only standing structure of K-25, a Uranium enrichment facility that was once the largest building in the world for 12,000 workers, became my portal into the past. I searched for remnants of the Manhattan Project and collected historical images from online archives. Svetlana Boym writes: “A cinematic image of nostalgia is a double exposure, or a superimposition of two images – of home and abroad, past and present, dream and everyday life.” In “Ghosts of the Manhattan Project,” I appropriate official images and combine them with my explorations and reflections, using colors and textures to hint at uncanny decay. The created palimpsests invite the viewer to refocus, and refresh their knowledge about the bomb and the consequences. They invite a critical form of nostalgia that remembers the victims but also the lost utopias. They encourage discussions about the future of the atomic age in which nuclear threats are back and nuclear power is praised as the solution to climate change.

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Yvonne Dalschen grew up in Germany and received an MA in Comparative Literature from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich. After moving around the globe, she now lives in Oak Ridge, TN, USA. She loves the freedom of digital photography. Her practice is open to experimentation and multiple styles. Leaning in on signs and traces, she often creates visual multiplicity through layers and diptychs. Her recent projects involve nostalgia, technology and the history of place.
Yvonne’s work has been included in national exhibitions across the US, recently in the Knoxville Arts & Culture Alliance juried shows, “Boundaries – Belonging – Becoming” by the Six Feet Project, Click! Photography Festival in North Carolina, Humble Arts Foundation’s “Photo for Non-Majors” and the Center for Fine Art Photography’s “30 over 50.” She is an active member in her art community and was a Bailey Opportunity Grant recipient in 2020 and 2021, which supported this project.

This event has concluded
Dates: -
Location: 107 Projects 107 Redfern St Redfern NSW 2016 Australia
Hours:
Entry Fee: Free
Exhibition Event:
Official Opening 10/11/2022 6:00 pm
Genres: Fine-Art

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