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An Exhibition Commemorating the
Fiftieth Anniversary of the Atomic Bomb

Exhibition Exhibition Exhibition
Tricity Trinity Eternity Ignored Target Japan
Travel Log Travel Log Travel Log

INFINITY CITY: Anniversary commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of the birth of the Atomic Bomb, a monumental project that culminated in the detonation of "The Gadget" in the New Mexico desert early on the morning of July 16, 1945. At that moment the future of humanity was irrevocably altered. Man had released the awesome energy inherent in the very structure of matter, and channeled it into a weapon of unprecedented power. The Atomic Age had dawned, and there was no turning back.

Anniversary represents the development of the Atomic Bomb (Los Alamos/Trinity Site), its deployment (Tinian island), and the destruction it wrought (Hiroshima and Nagasaki). We have visited each of these sites, and this exhibition is our response to both the physical and emotional impact of those journeys. We do not intend to present an account of history here, but rather to capture the spirit"or ghost"that still lingers in those historic places.

The three-part foundation of INFINITY CITY: Anniversary corresponds to the three geographic areas that we visited:

  • Tricity Trinity: Trinity Site and Los Alamos, New Mexico; Hanford Nuclear Reservation, Washington State
  • Eternity Ignored: Rota, Saipan, and Tinian Islands, Northern Mariana Islands
  • Target Japan: Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan
You can view each of these sections that compose the exhibition, and you can take side trips to the places we visited on our Atomic Odyssey using the links at the top of  this page.

The story leading to the atomic bombing of Japan in 1945 is truly an American epic, involving tens of thousands of people and spanning the continent and an ocean. It involved hundreds of millions of dollars, secrecy and spies, and embodied the "Can do!" spirit of wartime.

The event that precipitated this fervor occurred on December 2, 1942, when Enrico Fermi and his associates at the University of Chicago initiated the first controlled atomic chain reaction, at the Stagg Field Test Facility.

Since that fateful date, humanity has lived in the shadow of The Bomb, and this fact has subtly influenced our perception of life and the future of the planet. We have yet to acknowledge, much less understand, the social and psychological implications of that creation: the victims of nuclear experiments; our heritage of deadly poisons that threatens untold generations to come; and ultimately, man's capability to destroy virtually all life in a matter of minutes.

The legacy of America's nuclear program is profound: begun in haste and secrecy, it continues of its own impetus, still rife with denial and disinformation. There is no effective plan for disposal of radioactive waste, and only minimal preparations exist in the event of nuclear disaster. What was once seen as an instrument of peace and a source of endless energy has become an issue of debate, an expensive problem with no apparent solution.

We acknowledge the efforts of all those who labored in the great war effort to make the atomic bomb a reality. We encourage those still involved in nuclear development to answer the many questions before proceeding.

Ann T. Rosenthal / Stephen Moore

Seattle WA 1995

Ground Zero