THE FOLLOWING QUIET IS BROKEN BY CHEERING FROM THE CROWDS, THE BIRDS FLEEING TO THE SKY AND HUGE CLOUDS OF DUST WAFTING SLOWLY AWAY
Video Essay, 47’02” – 2 channel HD Video
2019, USA, Germany
Author: Irina Novarese
SCREENING DATE: Friday 17 and Saturday 18 April 2020 – 48 hours available on Vimeo HIER&JETZT: Connections
The extensive collection of materials on the history of the NRTS INL* area in Idaho is the starting point of this video essay. Local and national newspaper articles, photos and footage from field research and archival records are linked to create a new “sometimes factual, sometimes fictional” story about the area around the INL facilities. The film focuses closely on the concept of expectation and how this idea is positively and negatively related to various aspects of reality related to the INL area and its history; from the real estate industry (selling ‘a pleasant communal life’ to INL workers in the cities of Arco and in Atomic City) to the dreamlike idea that nuclear energy is safe, to peoples need for employment. The work raises the topics of the history of nuclear research, the increase in nuclear testing during the Cold War, and the philosophy of propaganda, for the public to reflect on. Personal fear and archive materials become part of a dual-screen video in which the viewer can freely link associations and play between the levels of information.
This video essay was realized for the 4th annual exhibition Holding What Can’t be Held at MING Studios, Boise ID (USA). The annual group exhibition is inspired by the radioactive “clean-up” site at the Idaho National Laboratory.
* The INL area has changed names (and property) over the years:
NRTS “ National Reactor Testing Station (from 1949)
INEL “ Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (from 1977)
INEEL “ Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (from 1997)
INL “ Idaho National Laboratory (from 2005)
Irina Novarese’s work is comprised of installations, drawing, video, artist books and interdisciplinary collaborative projects both as artist and organizer. She received a BA in Painting from the Academy of Fine Arts in Turin (IT) and a MA in Art in Context from UdK, Berlin. Her work has been presented in solo shows in Italy, Germany, Spain, Venezuela, and in the US and among other group exhibitions including: the 10th Venice Architecture Biennale (2006), the 2nd Ghetto Biennale in Haiti (2012) and the MOR Museo organico Romerillo during the 12th Havana Biennial (2015). Irina Novarese has lived and worked in Berlin since 2000. In 2017, she co- founded the artist initiative HIER & JETZT: Connections.