Missiles also..., 2002

Peter J. Joseph
Missiles also..., 2002
Installation view
Cyanotype photogram


Missiles also ... : a sculptural installation comprised of three lasercut steel panels with text on three walls. A video is projected on a fourth wall. The built installation room could be constructed within an exhibition area with shared walls to other spaces without exposed exterior walls. The ceiling should be relatively low, about nine feet high. Electrical centred on three walls approximately half way between floor and ceiling. Site work consists of sitting room within venue, constructing the room, wiring electrical, installing the three steel panels, painting the walls behind the panels with phosphorescent paint, installing light fixtures, building the table, hanging video projector, testing and troubleshooting.

Missiles also ... : The project is inspired by a news article from western news sources about a retaliatory incursion by Israel into Palestinian sector. The article detailed how a blacksmith shop was bombed in retaliation for earlier Palestinian aggressions. The text is chosen for the irony it exposes, and the unusual language it employs. The blacksmith shop is a pre-industrial, archaic and obsolete setting. The words, "blacksmith shop" are rarely if ever seen used in modern day reportage or language. Along with presenting the origin statement of, "Missiles also struck a blacksmith shop that the military said was a weapons factory," the project recreates the event materially and conceptually. The steel is the obvious reference to the blacksmith shop. The lighting and phosphorescent paint create a conditional reference to the ominous quality of night-time bombing. The video element brings alive the actual event over the course of five minutes, a span of time which causes a participant to be inside the installation.

Missiles also ... is a secular project, without reference to religious or to political alliance. This is not important. My project seeks to understand the event through materials and processes I am familiar with, and simply seeks a common experience for all spectator. within the statements' irony, incongruity, ambiguity and contradiction. Three large steel laser cut panels with entire Missiles also ... text, cut away, in various stages of chaos. Each hung on wall back-lit against phosphorescent paint with black light illumination.

Missiles also ... : the video element places the statement in motion through various real time, (not digitally manipulated) effects generated within my metal studio. A steel template has been cut through scanning the original sentence from the newspaper, made larger, then laser cut from steel, recreating the inconsistencies in the ink. The template was then used to project various light sources onto concrete. The light sources as diverse as sunlight projected from a pinhole in the roof, paper ignited from below, or intense welding light projected onto phosphorescent paint that charges and dissipates over seconds of time. Video plays out until entire statements unfolds. The video images are accompanied by the sound of trains passing in the night. Approaching, stopping, coordinated with the
moving images.