A Nuclear Ruin Is Being Born


Morgan Meis marks the strange moment:

A cathedral is designed with the idea that it should stand, and function, for a very long time perhaps beyond time. A nuclear power plant is designed with the knowledge that it must become a ruin, and rather quickly. It is born to die, and then to sit as a corpse, a testimony to the strange and unsettling function it once had. ...

A "zone of alienation" as the Soviets dubbed the area around Chernobyl is being created in Japan around Fukushima as we speak. A portion of the planet is being cordoned off and removed from the space-time continuum the rest of us inhabit. In a few months it will be a ruin, too, as old as the oldest places we know, lonely and uncanny in its suspended state, preserved as a living relic to the present we are still making.

(Photo: Still from “Chernobyl”, a video installation by Los Angeles artist Diana Thater)