15 minutes

A rock. Buildings. Trees. Nothing happens. But something is always moving. People walk by. Time passes by. Seasons change. The Earth’s tectonic plates are in constant but imperceivable motion. They slowly move apart or crash together.

When landmasses collided about 450 million years ago, the collision created a single continent known as Pangea. Movement, heat, and pressure over millions of years transformed shale into schist. New York City is built on this tough, old rock called Manhattan schist, which holds skyscrapers.

While most of Manhattan schist lies under the ground, the ancient rock sometimes interrupts the urban fabric. Outcrops of the rock appear throughout Manhattan, especially on the northern part of the island.

Observing a massive Manhattan schist outcrop on a quiet residential block, this film examines the dichotomy between nature and human life, the past and present, human time and cosmic time, and stillness and motion.

© 2023 Rima Yamazaki. All Rights Reserved.