Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Recreating Noah's Ark


I wasn't particularly taken with any of the critical making projects that I found online as I prepared for class, but I couldn't get Morehshin's work out of my head. I thought it was brilliant. Self-aware, filling a void (I'm always a fan of design with a purpose) and leaving a legacy for the future. I started to think about what else had been irreparably destroyed in the world, and what could be done about it... and realized that nature was my answer. Extinction is a real and serious threat, and the sad truth is that gratification and profit are more valuable than the life of an entire species.

With this in mind, I decided to riff off of Morehshin's work and re-create Noah's Ark. I came up with a plan to 3D print models of animals that have become extinct. Just as ISIS destroyed relics in Palmyra, so we are responsible for the destruction of thousands of species. The designs will be put online (perhaps on Rhizome) and open to anyone that is both willing and able to recreate them. Of course, 3D printers are a privileged resource, as is electricity, especially in the developing world (which has been most affected by the loss of species). This project is for posterity, a recognition of our responsibility, and a small way of preserving knowledge that will otherwise be lost. Just like Morehshin's work, these models will contain USBs with the STL information.

I included a few pictures to show what the models could look like.

To conclude, I think it is important to keep issues of reclamation, replacement, and recreation in mind. This does not undo generations of damage to the ecosystems, and I worry about a future where we kill nature only to replace it with resin figures. I hope that 3D printers will not continue to be used to bring back what we have destroyed. Also, issues of privilege. As usual, it is the regions of the world that have been most affected by this issue that are least likely to be able to take part in this project. 

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