If you spot some bomb shelters and hear sirens in Washington Square Park tomorrow don't panic, but take a moment to immerse yourself in the new multi-media installation, titled The Bomb Shelter. It's meant to connect New Yorkers to what Israelis went through last week during the bombing of a Jerusalem bus stop and repeated rocket strikes.
A periodic siren will sound and participating park goers will have 15 seconds to get from where they are in Washington Square to the shelter—the same length of time that those facing rocket attacks in Israel have to reach safety. As they rush into the shelter amidst the sound of blasts, immersive video continues the heart pounding experience as an actual Qassam rocket barrage hitting Sderot unfolds around them—all from the perspective of being in the crowd suffering through the attack.
The shelters were designed by some of New York's top graffiti artists, including COPE2, SKI, 2ESAE and KA, and the exhibit is sponsored by the Birthright Israel Alumni Community. The executive director Rebecca Sugar says, "After so many years, it becomes easy for Americans to just read past the headlines. We hope this will help people better understand what it is like to live under terror and renew their passion to see it end." Take part in their message tomorrow, from 1 to 4 p.m.