The Tower Of Babel

The Tower Of Babel

by Simon Høgsberg


The Tower Of Babel by Simon Høgsberg

Gallery author

Simon Høgsberg

Gallery author

Simon Høgsberg

Logically unfinished photo project based on a novel of Paul Auster.

American writer Paul Auster has written a novel called “City of Glass”. In that novel, among other things, he wrote about a private detective who keeps an eye on one man. The story takes place in Manhattan. Every day a man goes for a walk. Nothing strange there. Until a detective realizes that the specific streets that a man follows in the Manhattan street-grid make up the shapes of letters like T, H, E and so on. It soon becomes clear to a detective that a man is writing a sentence with his body, and that the sentence is THE TOWER OF BABEL.

If you plot down a small dot on specific intersections on the map of Manhattan and connect these dots with straight lines, you can actually write “THE TOWER OF BABEL”. The letter T is made up by four dots. The letter H by six dots, etc. The whole sentence THE TOWER OF BABEL is made up by 76 dots. Simon Høgsberg spent one day in each dot, and his plan was that the final project should consist of 76 photos in all — one photo from each intersection.

His hope was that somehow each of the 76 photographs would constitute some sort of interpretation of the Babel myth. After having spent 46 days on 46 different street corners on Manhattan Simon decided to quit the project. He simply reached the conclusion that the theme his project was based on was… he din’t know — hard to justify.

By the way, as you may know, the Tower of Babel from the Bible wasn’t built completely, was it?

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NB: you can use the arrow keys on your keyboard for moving between full-size images.