Autopsia in Abstentia

Marco Nieto

Reassembling the Earth


Jazairy El Hadi


Chernobyl faces an identity crisis. The nuclear disaster has stylized the landscape, turning it into a stage for everyone to gaze upon. Multiple realities are fighting and struggling for their voice to be heard by the world, forcing an environment that is already ridden with guilt and remorse further into an asynchronized phase of decoherence. More than just a field of evidence for decay, the failed landscape acts as an emotive device that excites and desires profound authenticity. Thus, a post-mortem examination of the embedded and nostalgic ruins, complex temporalities, and complicated indexical moments of memory, collapse, and narrative are crucial to speculate how Chernobyl can begin to heal and face its existential core. By evincing the idiosyncratic qualities and aesthetic sensibilities of its parts, sites, and people, Chernobyl can be encouraged to rise and bloom from the metaphorical forest fire that has both annihilated the landscape and created the nutrient rich ashes for its potential growth. The following interventions form a temporally and spatially open system that focuses on re-working and appropriating a set of conditions that affect the local, environmental, and bio-political. These apparatuses will vary in scale and scope in order to better comprehend the magnitude and severity of nuclear collapse by fragmenting the site into understandable bits, composing the framework of an evolutionary landscape that keeps the sophistication of heavy industry in effort to understand it, while also providing a sympathetic second life that is often caught between realities. By melding high-technology with high-typology, the interventions work in tandem and achieve synchronicity between artificial and natural as opposed to obstructing each other’s goals. This disintegration of binary and antagonistic qualities results in an industrial idyll that uncovers and stimulates the autopsy of collapse while not being present at it.