Copyright 2015
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Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin. The Revolutionary, Shtik Fleisch Mit Tzvei Eigen, 2013

To create the portraits in their project, Broomberg & Chanarin co-opted a four-lens, facial recognition camera developed for public security and border control in Russia. Use of the camera can be made in crowded train stations, demonstrations, stadiums—any public gathering. In such situations, because the individual has not agreed to be photographed, the resulting image renders her or him visually as dead, and also evasive, potentially as not agreeing to the state-civil contract. Indeed, Russia has green-lighted using such imagery in court as evidence, akin to a fingerprint.
In choosing their subjects and their approach, Broomberg & Chanarin invoked two streams of inspiration: first, they categorized their sitters according to the 120 social types that artist August Sander identified in his comprehensive photographic survey of German society over the first half of the 20th Century. Thus, they have a rebel, a baker, a philosopher, among other “types”. Second, the artists modeled their photos on Helmar Lerski’s non-heroic portraits, also categorized by profession. Like Lerski, they shot multiple views of one face, from different viewpoints, conveying claustrophobia and the impossibility of concluding anything substantial about the individual person under the skin.

 
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Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin. Shtik Fleisch Mit Tzvei Eigen, 2013

 
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Edmund Clark. Virtue Unmann'd, 2015

Dulce et Decorum Est: Virtue Unmann’d is a new work created for Suveillance.02. This audiovisual installation piece explores traditions of virtue and sacrifice in war in the context of a contemporary battlefield: drone strikes on tribal areas of Pakistan that border Afghanistan. Clark bases Virtue UnMann’d on research he conducted in Lahore, Islamabad, and Peshawar. On those trips, Clark collaborated with Pakistani artists, met with people from Waziristan who have been directly affected by drone strikes, sourced and created imagery of drones, and filmed the recitation of an ode written by the ancient Roman poet Horace and translated from Latin into Pashto.

 
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Massimo Berruti. Hidden Wounds

Hidden Wounds is an ongoing portrait series of people in North Waziristan who have been affected by drone strike events; some have been injured, others have lost family members. Like a pebble dropped into water, their physical wounds and psychological trauma ripple outward in rings of collateral damage. Two such effects are the phobias induced by the violence of the attacks, and the drugs some consume in order to balance the strikes' destabilizing aftermath. Access to North Waziristan is forbidden for journalists—especially foreigners—so for victims afraid of being traced by secret services, Berruti photographs in the places he uses for accommodation.

 
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Massimo Berruti. Hidden Wounds

 
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Yann Mingard. Deposit

Deposit is a photographic project about western civilization’s preoccupation with conserving and guarding elements of its culture. From 2009 to 2013, Mingard documented the physical locations and methods with which we collect and archive data: human DNA in the form of slivers of umbilical cord, dental samples, and sperm; DNA of animals extinct in the wild; the seeds of agricultural plants; and, of course, the vast quantities of digital data that we generate, traveling the pathways of the Internet.

Currently, under governmental and private surveillance, “banks” are being built to house stem cells, and blood, sperm, and umbilical cord samples. The means of conservation and research have evolved tremendously. Mingard identifies computers and the Internet as catalysts for this evolution: because of their ubiquity, they are prompting new levels of secrecy and security. For instance, sensitive files created by governments and multinationals are stored in former military bunkers and watched by private guards. Viewed in this context, Yann’s photos point to a bizarre, theatrical, and at times absurd aspect to all this guarding.

 
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Yann Mingard. Deposit

 
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Tomas Van Houtryve. Blue Sky Days, 2014

In October 2012, a drone strike in northeast Pakistan killed a 67-year-old woman picking okra outside her house. At a briefing held in 2013 in Washington, DC, the woman’s 13-year-old grandson, Zubair Rehman, spoke to a group of five lawmakers. “I no longer love blue skies,” said Rehman, who was injured by shrapnel in the attack. “In fact, I now prefer gray skies. The drones do not fly when the skies are gray.”
Over the past decade, drones have become the preferred weapon of the United States military and the CIA for strikes overseas. Their use for surveillance and commercial purposes is also rapidly expanding at home and abroad. Tomas van Houtryve attached his camera to a small drone and travelled across America to photograph the very sorts of American gatherings that have become habitual targets for foreign air strikes—weddings, funerals, groups of people praying or exercising. He also flew his camera over settings in which drones are used to less lethal effect, such as prisons, oil fields, industrial feedlots, and stretches of the U.S.-Mexico border. The images captured from the drone’s perspective engage with the changing nature of war, privacy, and government transparency.
go to project

 
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Tomas Van Houtryve. Blue Sky Days, 2014 & In Drones We Trust, 5 min video

 
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Jenny Odell. Land Marks, 2014

In Land Marks, Jenny Odell illuminates the ways that energy production sites scar and indelibly mark the surfaces of the earth. Comprising satellite images of four production and nuclear waste sites, Land Marks erases "the ground" or the natural settings around what constitutes the site in order to better understand the impact of mining, excavation, plutonium production, waste storage, and fracking. For example, with “Athabasca Oil Sands,” she has removed the boreal forest that surrounds the tailings ponds and excavated areas that make up the mine. In the case of “Fracking Patterns in Central Colorado,” Odell has cleared the wooded area around the trails and open areas that have been dug.
Odell’s aim is to reveal everything that counts as the mine/site—excavated areas, trails, roads, cars, buildings, waste ponds—by removing everything else. In doing so she isolates the structure and makes it more legible as a system. The resulting faint etchings are each an ode to systems, a clearly-distinguished, sprawling circuitry of byways, of bulbed and squared-off cul-de-sacs, of delicate threads akin either to neural ganglia in the brain, or architectural blueprints. One has the impression of deep intelligence and colossal waste at the same time.

 
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Jenny Odell. Land Marks, 2014