Sunday, January 11, 2009

Student Participants Needed for Project on Cluster Bombs

"Landmine" by Bill Fick

THE CLUSTER PROJECT is an online collaborative art exhibition that surveys the social, historical, financial, and technological underpinnings of cluster bombs. The web exhibition will display some 22 installations (or rooms or bomblets) made by a variety of artists using animation, illustration, photography, video and other techniques.

For one of the works called WHAT THE PEOPLE KNOW, we invite teachers to help us involve student artists and journalists from around the country in interviewing citizens in their communities.

While the United States has traditionally manufactured, sold and used the great bulk of cluster bombs around the world, it’s citizenry knows virtually nothing of the weapons, nor does it want to know. It is this combination of complicity and ignorance that The Cluster Project seeks to confront.

One of the works in the project, What the People Know, involves student media-makers questioning people in their communities. These will be simple man-in-the-street interviews in which subjects are
asked, “What is a cluster bomb?” They are then invited to discuss whatever they know about cluster munitions. The resulting material will then be sent to The Cluster Project where it will be collected and brought together in an exhibition installation.

Our goal is to gather responses from all fifty states.

For university teachers of video production and related subjects, this assignment can take as little as a single class period. We will help provide information for the classroom context that explains both the nature of cluster munitions and the aims of this project. We will also include a brief protocol for the production shoot including the required questions and issues regarding location and approach.

Students from any discipline can participate, but they must have access to video and audio equipment and have a basic knowledge of field production.

All collaborators and institutions involved in the project will be credited.

Students participating in What the People Know should benefit from their collaboration in a national art project, their practical
experience in the documentary tradition and a greater awareness of their nation’s role in the use, sale and development of dangerous weapons.

Contact either Erich Woodrum or Bob Paris below:

Erich Woodrum, producer of What The People Know,

Bob Paris, director of The Cluster Project (and Assistant Professor in Kinetic Imaging at VCU’s School of the Arts in Richmond, VA),

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