Anna Jermolaewa

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  From 1964 through 1973, the United States dropped over two million tons of bombs on Laos. Many of these bombs still exist as unexploded ordinance, buried in the countryside soil. In a small village outside the town of Phonsavan, locals have found a positive use for these “bombies,” after detonated by a bomb-clearing unit. These villagers melt the remaining aluminum casings to make various items, the most popular of which are dining ware. In late 2016, Jermolaewa witnessed this process and the resulting video shows how these utensils are made. It is shown in Dining Room (2017), a dining-room installation that uses Lao objects (including spoons, forks, and knives made out of American bombs that the artist has brought back to US) to construct a setting that is both inherently Lao and an emulation of the typical American family dinner placement.