Project Director and Lead Artist Melissa Shiff, in conversation with the noted journalist Renee Ghert-Zand at the Feast of Jewish Learning- Palo Alto, January 26, 2013. The theme selected for the evening is Dreams and Schemes- Perfect for a discussion of Mordecai Noah and the Mapping Ararat project.
Mapping Ararat: A Jewish Homeland Virtually Created
Renee Ghert-Zand, Melissa Shiff
Long before Theodore Herzl dreamed of a Jewish state, Jewish American leader Mordecai Noah schemed to transform Grand Island, New York (in the Niagara River) into Ararat, a “city of refuge for the Jews”. Now Mapping Ararat: An Imaginary Jewish Homelands Project, a collaborative digital art and humanities project, reanimates Noah’s 1825 plan. A team of historians, artists and digital media experts are using cutting-edge digital media technologies to construct an interactive virtual world that brings Noah’s Ararat vision to (virtual) life at present day Grand Island. Join in as journalist Renee Ghert-Zand interviews Professor Melissa Shiff, lead artist of the Mapping Ararat team.