Species of Ghost. 2019.

I traveled for thirteen days in the southwest of New Mexico, United States. I visited ruins of past civilisations and communities in the counties of Sandoval, Socorro, Catron & Sierra. Using outdated maps, conversations with strangers and an 8-foot long Chevy van to navigate, I encountered 27 different sites (that may be considered by some, ‘ghost towns’). I re-created my journey using journal excerpts, photographs, video performance and artefacts in a multi-media installation for On Reverse Commuting, an exhibition in Brooklyn in July 2019.

I intend to continue this research and isolate parts of the material I have collected. 
‘Ghost towns’ are sites of abandonment and dereliction, play as the skeletons of often forgotten or capitalised histories, and are frequently defined as places that lack human occupancy (where it once was). I have also discovered the proposal of the intentional construction of a ‘ghost town’ by a tech firm in the southern part of the state; a city-scale lab that would algorithmically simulate human inhabitance and serve researchers and scientists the possibility to run large-scale experiments to aid “smart city” development.

There are different “species” of ghost towns; some have revitalised their economy through tourism, others stand as deserted ruins of human intervention in the mineral make-up of the land, and others, forts that have become national monuments.
Conclusions that I was able to draw from this performance/journey have included reflections on my womanhood and North America’s dynamic history. 

Stay tuned.