Cherry Blossoms

Alyssa Wright, from the Computing Culture group at MIT, has created a fantastic performance/project called Cherry Blossoms.


The idea is raise our awareness of the civilian war deaths in Baghdad. Inspired by Paula Levine‘s Shadows From Another Place: Baghdad San Francisco project which imagines the effects upon San Francisco, had the bombs which fell on Baghdad been destined for the American city.

Cherry Blossoms is a backpack that uses a small microcontroller and a GPS unit. Recent news of bombings in Iraq are downloaded to the unit every night, and their relative location to the center of the city are superimposed on a map of Boston. If the wearer walks in a space in Boston that’s correlated to a site of violence in Baghdad, the backpack detonates, releasing a compressed air cloud of confetti, looking for all the world like smoke and shrapnel. Each piece of confetti has the name of a civilian who died in a war based on lies.

00baghhji.jpgActivated Boston Zones from Baghdad reported civilian deaths

Via edgy_product.

Related stories: Interview with Mushon Zer-Aviv, Baghdad in Brooklyn, What I Did Last Summer, and Vantage, a game about war causalities.