"The Silence of Nduwayezu" (1997)

"The Silence of Nduwayezu," 1997
1 million slides, light table, magnifiers, and illuminated wall text. Table: 36 inches x 217 3/4 inches x 143 inches. Text: 6 inches x 188 inches.
© Alfredo Jaar, courtesy Galerie Lelong, New York.

"Because of my background as an architect, I design every work based on a program. The program here was to tell a story in a very dark space and to enter a space of light where- instead of light- we find another kind of horror. Sometimes light is liberating and light is hope. Here, light is horror. It reveals the eyes of this kid who witnessed a genocide that we did not want to witness. I’m interested in that moment when the audience takes a look. They look at the eyes very carefully, and that is the moment I’m looking for- when their eyes are a centimeter away from the eyes of Nduwayezu, who witnessed what we didn’t want to see." - Alfredo Jaar ...

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"Because of my background as an architect, I design every work based on a program. The program here was to tell a story in a very dark space and to enter a space of light where- instead of light- we find another kind of horror. Sometimes light is liberating and light is hope. Here, light is horror. It reveals the eyes of this kid who witnessed a genocide that we did not want to witness. I’m interested in that moment when the audience takes a look. They look at the eyes very carefully, and that is the moment I’m looking for- when their eyes are a centimeter away from the eyes of Nduwayezu, who witnessed what we didn’t want to see."

- Alfredo Jaar

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