9/11 in Art: Your Reflections

Blog: 08.26.11

Friday, August 26, 2011 - 06:00 AM

The 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks is just a few weeks away, and Studio 360 is curating a list of cultural works that reflected on the tragic events.  We asked you: what would you add to the list?  You responded with books, movies, songs, and poems, with suggestions ranging from Rufus Wainwright to John Adams.

Liza from Philadelphia was moved by Pig Iron Theatre Company's Love Unpunished, a play set in the evacuation stairway of one of the World Trade Center towers.  The show "personalized the fear and bravery of people escaping the towers," Liza says. "It was incredibly moving and subtle and beautiful."

Many of you found comfort in music following 9/11. Molly from Maine suggested the song cycle Elegies, by the musical theater composer William Finn. She describes the work as "a celebration of life through stories of death ... and has the ability to, without falling into sappy emotional manipulation, accurately demonstrate how it feels to look to the future after the anguish of loss." 

Tish from Florida remembers listening to the audiobook of Jonathan Safran Foer's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and hearing the phrase "planes crashing into buildings." "On first hearing, I was annoyed at having it repeated endlessly and thought, yes, yes, we know," she recalls. "But the combination of the grief in the actor's voice who did the reading and my own memories of seeing that moment on TV, over and over and over and... Now think it was sheer brilliance."

Spike Lee's film 25th Hour  had a particular impact on Sid from Brooklyn, because it was filled with "stark reminders … that these New York characters are living, struggling, existing in a new world, one that is immeasurably changed, but continuing to move just as quickly and harshly and beautifully as it always had and always will."

As you reflect on 9/11, is there a movie, painting, poem, or other work that's helped you reflect on the event? 

Tell us — and see suggestions from other listeners.


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Comments [2]

Sally Bliumis-Dunn

This was a poem that I wrote after hearing the names of the deceased read on WNYC that first year.

Their Names

Like a rain I feel but cannot see,
the names of the dead, falling.

Silences I hear between
first names, middle, last

are slivers of empty air between
lines of rain. I want

to be in these tiny silences
that cannot hold their deaths

but join them to all silence –
rests in a piece of music,

the quiet beneath a rock,
the feather on a crow,

beak closed, wings
perfectly still.

Sep. 06 2011 01:01 PM
Ronni Greenwood from Ireland now, New York Always.


In case you don't know the song I just described, you can find it here.

Sep. 04 2011 03:07 PM

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