by Keith Piper

Keith Piper is strongly engaged with the black struggle and considers his work to be part of the entire structure of cultural and social transformations. Exploded City caters to the idea of demarcation lines existing in the current urban environment, and separate people on the basis of race and social class. In this artwork a central figure declamates a text that is based on the biblical story about the tower of Babylon. In the background, urban landscapes and parts of news broadcasting are visible. Sounds referring to urban unrest were mixed with these images. The main theme of the work is described in the biblical text: The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.” The exploded city exists in the space that was left after the fragmentation of the language. A space in which economic, social, cultural, and racial differences are deeply rooted in so called no go areas.