Dwelling was born from a seed of curiosity about the architectural remnants in Freedom Park. Abandoned stoops, foundations, and sidewalks invited us to reflect on the history of the park. These physical remains witnessed the condemnation of buildings, the seizure of property through eminent domain, and the demolition of over 600 structures to build the major freeways.
Using this palimpsest for orientation, Michael Page, a geospatial scientist with the Emory Center for Digital Scholarship, and artists Mark Wentzel and Robert Henry, reimagined a selection of the homes foundational footprints using low-VOC athletic field paint. Throughout the installation it will be documented by drone photography, capturing the changing image over time as grass grows and lines become worn.
A digital interface, by way of a web based app called Open Tour Builder developed by Emory’s Center for Digital Scholarship, provides the framework for delivery of historic content through visitors’ mobile devices, uniquely expanding the user experience at each of the 5 stops within the installation. Dwelling will explore the personal stories within the context of a larger, complex narrative of civic activism, political maneuvering, and urban planning. By redrawing demolished buildings in situ, we are recognizing their historic and cultural significance in the formation of Freedom Park and the City of Atlanta.
Dwelling will offer fresh narratives that bridge the past, present, and future of Freedom Park and the City of Atlanta in a moment of new planning and development, intending to open dialogue among a diverse audience.
–Laura Hennighausen, Nancy Boyd, and Victoria Walsh