this is a small section of what the wall will look like, a view of intimacy and loss

As families returned to assess the damage to their homes and neighborhoods, one of the first signs of life was the appearance of a heap of trash at curbside.

The 600 drawers incorporated in Napoli’s installation were collected from all across New Orleans — in Gentilly, in Central City, Uptown and in the East, in Bywater, Carrollton, the French Quarter, the Ninth Ward Lakeview and Mid-City. Graphic artist Rondell Crier will collaborat with Napoli to create a digital database documenting where the drawers are from and any information about the families who discarded them. The drawers are categorized by size and color, their knobs or the lack of them, their age, whether hand-made or mass-produced. This digital database will be presented via an interactive computer kiosk near the memorial wall. Both installations evoke and comment on the differences that divide and unite us. They also underscore that our lives are more than just our thoughts and physical embodiment. Our lives are our neighborhoods, our family, our friends, our neighbors, our workplace, our schools, our communities, our animals, our gardens, our personal property, and even our furniture drawers, the place where we store our secrets, our past lives, our photos, our mementos, our passions and our hopes and dreams.


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    • momalley on February 2, 2006 at 9:21 pm
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    Jana: your show will be incredible – I’m totally inspired by the creativity and emotional impact. drawers are always full of the most intimate things about us as individuals, underwear, keepsakes, guns (sad to say) and to see these drawers empty, mold filled, etc. has such a strong feeling to it. huge luck with your exhibit!!!

    • Jacquelinemcl on February 4, 2006 at 4:10 pm
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    Dear Jana, I am so glad you are doing this project. It befits you and New Orleans. So evocative of the many neighbourhoods and varied inhabitants of the City, and what will no longer be there, but still is. I do hope the wall will travel. Maybe come to London?

    • sam givhan on March 4, 2006 at 4:26 pm
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    the drawers are, as you perceive, the epitome of a universal commodity…representing their former contents now emptied…they are recognizable, and therefore real both as catharsis, and as symbol…indeed life goes on…amen…amen…amen…

    ……alas you have saved me a great search…I had waited, knowing that it would become an obsession once begun, ‘til my life had order enough to take leave, ‘til I could stand the news, regardless…when my friend from across the world in china asked: “how is she…?” …I could no longer answer: “I don’t know, but, I’m sure she is fine…”…sooo, Google and I, searched the universe…prepared to find only old cold indicators of a former life, I went first to YA-YA, then to a name…and behold, life, within and during the travail, life comprehended by and producing art…I have found you in the artifacts and know indeed you are still on this side of the vale…I still, as always, will need to come and see, to affirm the manifestation of spirit in flesh and palpable form…but, am relieved, that Google can put this knight to rest until a longed for day of spring…

    • Carmela on January 13, 2007 at 3:09 pm
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    I just learned about this exhibit and was deeply touched. When I saw the first photos, I felt as if a million voices were speaking trough these very personal objects, all trying to be heard, to tell their story. I work near the World Trade Center site and I am very eager to visit as soon as I can! I consider myself very, very lucky to be able to visit this exhibit in person. Thank you, Jana, for giving me this incredible opportunity, for giving New York and the world this opportunity and the great care you’re putting in this project. God Bless you.

    • artttart on January 15, 2007 at 6:14 pm
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    Just saw NYT photos online here in Middle Calaughflornia; Wonderful work. It propels me to consider the ephemeral, momentary quality of all our physical lives. Tho I have never been to New Orleans, the city will now be in every drawer I touch going forward.Thank You & much good energy for future projects.

    • jdietrick on March 7, 2007 at 9:51 pm
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    I love this piece and want to talk to you about possibly being in a show, but I can’t find your contact information! Please email Joelle Dietrick at jdietrick@gmail.com for more info. Thanks!

    • Hector on March 11, 2007 at 2:33 am
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    Just wondering…do you happen to have a drawer which was found at 4929 S. Galvez, NOLA 70125? If so, i have some information about this drawer for your database. hj@rosenet.net

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