Aereality: Essays on the World from Above by William L. Fox

By William L. Fox


PART 1: Out West
1 Targeting
2 Earthworks
3 The Pit . . .
4 . . . and the Stack
5 The Horizontal City
6 The Angels of Mulholland Drive
7 Surveillance


PART 2: again East
8 Time Flies By
9 The Sept. 11 Trail
10 The Vertical City
11 flooring Truth


PART three: Down Under
12 Mount Kosciuszko: 2,228 Meters (7,310 Feet)
13 Pennyroyal
14 Lake Eyre: forty nine toes lower than Sea Level
15 Lake Eyre: 4,500 ft Above Sea Level
16 Alice Springs
17 Over Canberra . . . and l. a.

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They were one of the deciding factors for Lt. Col. Paul Tibbets when he was scouting a location from which to train his crews in the fifteen specially “silver-plated” B-29s forming the 509th Composite Group, the squadron that was designated the atomic bomb group. The other major factor was Wendover’s isolation, which is stunning. qx6 1/13/09 12:58 PM Page 25 T A R G E T I N G 25 City, the nearest urban area, and although it is linked to the rest of the world by the freeway, when the soldiers of the Army Air Corps first arrived in 1940, they thought they had landed on the moon.

Walter De Maria scouted the West from a plane to find the site in southern New Mexico for The Lightning Field, a collection of four hundred stainless steel poles more than twenty feet high that are situated precisely to create a suspended level plane of points one mile wide by a kilometer deep. Many of the books about earthworks, as well as the best-selling book about American art by Robert Hughes, American Visions, feature the piece under dark skies with lightning striking in the background as their cover illustration.

A few dozen of the more than six hundred buildings from the war still remain, and CLUI rents several of them for exhibition spaces and workshops. A. as a residency unit and placed it on one of the old airbase foundations. The artists and writers who apply from around the world to work here are usually treading a line that wanders into the practice of geography, and I’m no exception. I’ve been working here on and off for five years with the photographer Mark Klett on a book about the Enola Gay and the erosion of history; and for the last two years on an experimental cartographic exploration with the artist Katherine Bash.

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