mahicantuck is an installation for three rooms.
The first room, “a 1:1 map of itself,” originated as an impromptu assemblage theater built in the late summer of 2016 in a former vegetable garden. The early idea was little more than to use sod and to dig a hole; in the course of two weeks six unplanned stations manifested, each with its own microeology: hollow earth, petrified forest, compost house, telescope bridge, harmonial spheres, and erth* bath. A box containing lenses, wishbones, cicada husks, and photo negatives was buried in the ground beneath the compost house (still there), with sampled pieces from the other stations mixed with the compost itself. After the construction a script was written, a fictocritical engagement further investigating some of the evolving mythopoetic strains percolating in the site. The site was dismantled late in the fall to make way for a second installation.
The video is to be projected on a far wall as one enters the room, as large as possible.
The photographic record might be hung unframed with string and butterfly clips on the left wall, salon-style. On the opposite right wall, photos shot with 120 film could be hung more formally, small prints framed with wide mats.
Material from the original site—sod and marble chips, tree stumps, a compost pile, galvanized steel, gourds and chimes, little crystal earth globes in a shallow dish of water—would be arranged across the floor in their own little non-sites. The compost pile should be featured in the center, its rich loamy smell greeting the viewer as she enters the room.
* Bill McKibben’s Eaarth adds a vowel; I felt subtracting one was better suited to present conditions.