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  • Drift Remote: Princesses, Power, Petroglyphs

    Living means leaving traces.   Walter Benjamin [1]

    This is why the imaginary and the real must be, rather, like two juxtaposable or superimposable parts of a single trajectory, two faces that ceaselessly interchange with one another, a mobile mirror.   Gilles Deleuze [2]

    Do not clean off dust specks, they are real.    Benoit Mandelbrot [3]

    Rock art search/re/search and plain walking in remote places becomes a drift as traces animate fragmenting juxtapositions. (Album: Northwest Nevada Drift)

    DO NOT RELEASE OUTDOORS OR NEAR ELECTRIC POWER LINES — MAY CAUSE POWER OUTAGES reads the warning on the Disney Princesses Mylar balloon tangled in the brush rim-edge. Where from?  Why here?  Here: 1/3 mile from the Pacific Intertie powerline conveying high-voltage direct current — electricity without interruption — from the Columbia River’s Dalles Dam to Los Angeles. The LA converter station is less than 20 miles from Disney’s Animation Studio in Burbank.  Standing on the rim with petroglyphs below I can see the towers and hear the hum of electrified hydropower flowing south. Power that supplies nearly 50% of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power electrical system's peak capacity; enough to serve 2-3 million LA households.  

    Petroglyphs, fur, bones, stones, glass, Mylar (aluminized plastic) — agency is diffuse.  Rock art search/re/search becomes a lost and found endeavor: the fizzle of classification, the thickening of lattice.  Vibrant material-realities illuminate evidence; a montage where meanings fold and unfold. Memory, the past in/of the now, curates an equivalence called future. The Princesses touched down in a graceful re-entry with no wish to blow LA’s fuses. 
    [1] Walter Benjamin, Charles Baudelaire: A Lyric Poet in the Era of High Capitalism. Verso Books 1997.
    [2] Gilles Deleuze. Essays Critical and Clinical, trans. Daniel D. Smith and Michael A. Greco. 1997.
    [3] Benoit Mandelbrot. Fractals and Chaos: The Mandelbrot Set and beyond. 2004.

  • Swallowing III: Power & Other Than

    Celilo Converter Station, south of the Dalles Dam. For nearly 50 years this BPA-owned facility has provided low-cost hydroelectric power to Southern California via the Pacific Intertie, a high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line that runs uninterrupted for 846 miles.  By steadily upgrading capacity, the 3800 Megawatt line delivers electricity to over 2 million homes in Los Angeles. Photo with labels added adapted from ABB [1]


    With the building of The Dalles Dam in the 1950s, Native peoples were dis-placed, re-placed. Some did not move, many returned seasonally or to stay [2]. Such a place is the Lone Pine In-Lieu Fishing Site, a federally-owned plot near river’s edge.  As Molly Harbarger reports in March 2016, “ ‘We understand there are some terrible living conditions there,’ said U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Portland District spokeswoman Diana Fredlund. Few of the sites are as bad as Lone Pine. … Lone Pine is gated, separating it from The Dalles, a hub of Columbia Gorge life. The tribal members don't have access to the city's amenities like electricity. Instead, residents have to jack it from the bathroom lights and generators." [3]

    Lone Pine fishing platform and The Dalles Dam. Photo: Douglas Beauchamp, April 2017


    3. Many rock carvings and rock paintings are submerged by Lake Celilo Some displaced, then replaced at Columbia Hills State Park’s Temani Pesh-wa trail.
    (See Swallowing Petroglyph Canyon). Many images remain on the cliffs and outcrops, gazing south and east, over the dam-shaped lake, the power towers, the wind turbines, the highways and railroads, the salmon seeking, the river peoples living and fishing.

    NOTES Below

    Photo Album: Swallowing III 

    Rock painting on cliffs above Lake Celilo. Photo: Douglas Beauchamp, April 2017

    NOTES
    [1] ABB, a Euro-based multi-national, is the world's largest builder of electricity grids  
    [2] Shadow Tribe: The Making of Columbia River Indian Identity (2010) Andrew H. Fisher
    http://www.washington.edu/uwpress/search/books/FISSHA.html
    [3] Decrepit fish camps built on broken promises: Four tribes that had fishing villages wiped out in the last century are left waiting for the federal government to provide better housing
    Story by Molly Harbarger, Oregonian, March 11 2016.
    Also: Legislation Honors Long-Ago Federal Promises to Replace Tribal Fishing Villages Drowned By Columbia River Dams Terri Hansen, Indian Country Today, July 26, 2016.