MATTHEW BUCKINGHAM
             
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The Six Grandfathers, Paha Sapa, in the Year 502,002 C.E. Back  < >  Next
             
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2002            
Black and white digital c-print, wall text, dimensions variable
             
Geologists believe it will take approximately 500,000 years for the portraits of the four U.S. presidents carved on Mount Rushmore to erode and become unrecog-
nizable. "The Six Grandfathers, Paha Sapa, in the Year 502,002 C.E." asks the viewer to consider Mount Rushmore as a cultural, political, and social symbol by imagining Rushmore's inevitable disappearance and slow return to "nature." As its power to represent fades, the paradox of Rushmore's meaning as a "shrine to democracy"—on land stolen from the Sioux and carved by an artist who was an active member of the Ku Klux Klan—intensifies. A special poster edition of this work was produced for Cabinet Magazine.
             
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