Margaret Evangeline works on large aluminum plates whose surfaces she grinds to produce shimmering three-dimensional effects; she then paints the plates with abstract patterns. From her studio on West 26th Street in Chelsea, she witnessed the effects of the attacks.
"Signs of death were everywhere," Ms. Evangeline said. "I was seeing these heartbreaking funeral processions every day. Even two months later, the smell in my studio was so strong it made me sick. I couldn't work. I was so fragmented that I couldn't focus on anything. When I heard about this program, I started to cry because that was just what I needed."
Ms. Evangeline has an arrangement with the New Mexico Air National Guard that allows her to take her plates to remote fields and fire at them with a variety of weapons. The results are stark and powerful.
"I hate to admit it, but I felt much better after I did it," she said of her experiences shooting at the plates. "It cleared something for me. My work has always been about loss and displacement, and I think this experience is going to change it in a big way. It's a paradigm shift. The light out here is astonishing. Being in a sanctuary like this, where so many artists have worked over the years, can't help but affect you."