Sarah Anne Cohen

Other Dust

Millions of years ago, Ramon Crater consisted of mountain ranges. Different natural processes have shaped it to what we see today. The site embodies the changes it has undergone, like a geological treasure chest that reveals the slow history of the place.
After reading about a plan to build a simulation facility for Israeli astronauts in the crater, where they could experience and explore a visit to Mars, I set out to take pictures of the site. I realized that the simulation would turn the crater into something else, creating a story about a foreign place. As an immigrant whose identity was altered by my relocation, I was interested in the crater – a place whose surface bears the history of its formation and continues to take shape and formulate its identity.
The project consists mainly of close-up photographs of the crater’s soil. Some summon an experience, like my own
– of misidentification and disorientation; a small detail can become larger and vice versa. Sometimes the images marvel at reality, turn it magical. Emphasizing the physical, sculptural, and mystical nature of the place, of this “Mars,” the grain of the photography film combines with the grain of the photographed places and introduces questions about matter in its formation and dissolution, about “dust.”