You Can’t Be Buried Here

You Can't Be Buried Here, a screening and a report on the preservation of the world’s crops, a trans-millennial time capsule, and the ultimate supermarket sweep.

With Frank Heath & Chris Leong 7:00 p.m. 264 Canal Street, 3W, New York, New York $7 suggested donation, free for members

Please join us for You Can’t Be Buried Here, a status report and screening with artist Frank Heath, whose work scrutinizes the technologies, structures, and fictions we build to preserve humanity in case of cataclysm.

Heath will screen “Midnight Sun,” the newest episode of On the Beach, his ongoing, multiyear series commissioned by Triple Canopy. On the Beach is part of The Long Tomorrow, an issue of the magazine that asks: Who bears the responsibility, and who possesses the imaginative capacity, to conceive of an ideal world? Heath’s series takes its name from the classic Cold War novel by the British author and aeronautical engineer Nevil Shute, in which the sole survivors of a global nuclear disaster pass the time as radioactive fallout drifts across the seas. Heath’s adaptation, like many previous ones, explores our collective capacity to envision the end.

You Can’t Be Buried Here centers on the Global Seed Vault, a fail-safe repository that aims to act as a backup for the world’s crops in case of human-made or natural disaster. The vault is located 120 feet beneath the ground within a sandstone mountain on the remote Arctic archipelago of Svalbard, a former hub for whaling and coal mining that now has 2,600 permanent residents and largely serves the needs of scientists and ecotourists. Nearly one million seed samples, collected from almost every nation, are stored at negative eighteen degrees celsius. Since opening in 2008, the vault has served as the subject of numerous documentary films, travel-guide entries, and works of fiction. Last year, the Norwegian company Piql opened the neighboring Arctic World Archive, which promises to be for “the world’s digital heritage and data” what the “Global Seed Vault is for plants.”

In this episode of On the Beach, Dwight, the protagonist, and his film crew embark on the ultimate supermarket sweep in search of nonperishable goods. Heath will also share his research for the fourth episode of On the Beach, which focuses on the Crypt of Civilization, the world’s first trans-millennial time capsule, scheduled to open in 8113. Located in Atlanta, the crypt purports to encapsulate the history of the United States and the world up to 1941, when the capsule was sealed. This mission and the process of creating the capsule are narrated by the founders in Stream of Knowledge, a film that accompanies the Crypt and targets future inhabitants of Earth. Conceived by minister, businessman, and Oglethorpe University president Thornwell Jacobs, the Crypt also is notable for prompting the innovation of numerous archiving techniques for film and audio. Its holdings include vinyl recordings of bird songs, microfilm editions of the Quran, dental floss, a badminton set, Budweiser beer, and, not least, seeds.

Following the presentation, Heath will be joined in conversation by Chris Leong, founding partner of Leong Leong, a New York-based architecture and design firm.

You Can’t Be Buried Here is made possible in part through the generous support of the Royal Norwegian Consulate General in New York.

Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. In order to ensure that events are accessible and comfortable, we’ll open the doors at 6:30 p.m. and strictly limit admittance to our legal capacity. Please check Triple Canopy’s Facebook and Twitter accounts for updates, as we’ll indicate if events are sold out.

Triple Canopy’s venue is located at 264 Canal Street, 3W, near several Canal Street subway stations. Our floor is accessible by elevator (63" × 60" car, 31" door) and stairway. Due to the age and other characteristics of the building, our bathrooms are not ADA-accessible, though several such bathrooms are located nearby. If you have specific questions about access, please write at least three days before the event and we will make every effort to accommodate you.

  • Frank Heath is an artist living and working in New York. He has had solo exhibitions at Simone Subal Gallery, New York; Swiss Institute, New York; and Art Basel Statements, Basel. His work has been included in group exhibitions and screenings at the Kitchen, New York; International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Power Plant, Toronto; Centre Pompidou, Paris; and the High Line, New York, among other venues.
  • Chris Leong is a founding partner of Leong Leong. He received his Master of Architecture from Princeton University and his Bachelor of Arts from University of California, Berkeley. As partner at Leong Leong, he has overseen the direction of multiple mixed-use projects including the Anita May Rosenstein Campus of the Los Angeles LGBT Center and the AAFE Center for Community and Entrepreneurship. He has also served as the co-chair of the New Practices Committee at the AIA Center for Architecture. Chris is currently Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. Leong Leong is the recipient of the Architectural League of New York’s Emerging Voices Award, the AIA New York New Practices Award, and has been recognized as a Design Vanguard by Architectural Record.