Wire Service: AP
On August 8, 2005 the Associated Press reported, "When the former Taliban regime in Afghanistan destroyed two 1,600-year-old Buddha statues lining Bamiyan Valley's soaring cliffs, the world shook with shock at the demise of such huge archaeological treasures. Now, artist Hiro Yamagata plans to commemorate the towering Buddhas by projecting multicolored laser images onto the clay cliffsides where the figures once stood. 'I'm doing a fine art piece. That's my purpose - not for human rights, or for supporting religion or a political statement,' said the 58-year-old artist, whose other laser works include a permanent display at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. Against a canvas of desert darkness, 14 laser systems will project 140 overlapping faceless "statues" sweeping four miles (6 1/2 kilometers) across Bamiyan's cliffs in neon shades of green, pink, orange, white and blue. Each image will continuously change color and pattern."