(ab)using history: Modern Stewardship of Plantations in North Carolina
A laser cut model of Hope Plantation in Windsor, North Carolina lifts to reveal a stack of 3D printed photo albums representing modern uses of plantations in the state.
Representing this dataset was a challenge. Most importantly, I wanted to expose the exploitative modern uses of plantations without disrespecting the enslaved people who suffered at them. This required careful consideration of materials, symbols, colors, and other design choices. I also wanted to evoke feelings of anger and injustice without harming the viewers of my artifact. I abandoned many sketches and developing ideas when they didn't feel quite right.
Initially, I planned out a 3D printed model that would represent two versions of a real North Carolina plantation house. One idea was to have a single house model split in half, the left side representing the antebellum era and the right side representing the present. Another idea was to create two house models, one representing the antebellum and one the present. I would connect the bottoms of the models together and create a rotating mechanism to spin the models. Later on, I decided to shift to a nesting doll laser cut model; each "doll" would be a prism representing the prevalence of different usages.