“To control people, you have to control culture, the context on which civil society is built. “
— Jared Keller, for The Daily Dot
It is a harrowing fact to dwell upon: ISIL continually visits horrors on humanity in many forms, which includes the destruction of timeless artifacts and heritage sites that future generations may never see in real life again.
However, there are still people who choose to fight back against the terror with small, potent doses of hope.
Morehshin Allahyari, an Iranian-American new media artist, activist, and educator based in San Francisco, is researching the destroyed artifacts and creating versions of them with a 3D printer. The art project, entitled ‘Material Speculation: ISIS’, and its pieces are created not with the intent to replace what has been destroyed, but to “show that History cannot be so easily erased”.
Each piece is printed using a transparent material. Allahyari embedded a memory card containing photos, maps, and videos that are essential parts of each work. the data can be removed from each piece and used for reprint, and can even be downloaded by anyone for free.
The pieces were originally exhibited at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, alongside other artists’ works that focused on the destruction of other pieces at historical sites throughout time.
Watch a short video on this art project below: