'Rendering the Unthinkable' art exhibit set to open at 9/11 Memorial and Museum

NEW YORK (WABC) -- When the towers fell on September 11th, 2001, it didn't take long for historians to begin the work of preserving artifacts and memories of that day for future generations.

But now that day is being remembered in new way, in a special exhibition that uses art to memorialize those tragic events.

"This is a very different, quiet space," said Alice Greenwald, Director of 9/11 Memorial and Museum. "It's a way to get back in touch with where we were 15 years ago."

September 11th, 2001 our city was shaken to its core.

That sense of loss and devastation was captured in the first major special exhibition inside the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.

"It really gives you a sense inside the heart of these New Yorkers who happened to be artists, how they responded to one of the worst days we've ever seen," said Joe Daniels, President of the 9/11 Memorial Museum.

Manju Shandler created the masterpiece "Gesture" that features nearly 3,000 drawings, one for each person who died in the attacks.

Her studio was near the Twin Towers.

"It was definitely a way of processing what had happened and taking in the events and kind of putting it out, kind of purging my soul," Shandler said.

There's the shirt that belonged to a New York City firefighter who worked at the pile nonstop for three days. When he came home, his daughter hand washed his clothing.

Several works contain dust from Lower Manhattan.

One artist mixed ash from Ground Zero with paint.

"I felt this was appropriate because New York had become a burial site and a crematorium," said Ejay Weiss, an artist.

One of the most powerful pieces is a bronze statue. It's a testimony to those who lived and those who died on September 11th. The statue's outreached hand is a gesture of connection.

"It's very personal and I see people stopping in different places and having very deep meditative moments," Greenwald said.

Fittingly titled "Rendering the Unthinkable", the exhibit opens to the public September 12th. null
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