Tuesday, April 22, 2003

This is a photo of Mt. Everest (Jomolungma or Sagarmatha); the top 1000 metres, in fact, from the South Col to the summit. It's a 1:240 scale model that Ben Coode-Adams and I built for the Hastings Museum and Art Gallery's "Experimental Spaces" program, and that featured in a performance piece we did there in January of this year (mentioned only now, in April, because we can post photos for the first time). The performance involved a real-time reconstruction over 29 hours of one especially tragic, and revealing day on Everest. Built from close readings of 4 first-hand accounts written about that day, the piece explored the ways that written narratives establish certain kinds of knowledge (e.g. truth), and how alternative methods of conducting research (visual reconstruction, performance) can usefully intervene in the production of histories. Ben and I are going to present an expanded version of the piece in Banff (May, 2003), in collaboration with the Banff New Media Institute and the Mountain Cultures department, and in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay's first ascent of Everest in 1953. You can read more about this work, entitled "'Is Someone Coming to Get Me?'" here.