War the Theatre of all Culture

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From the Jury discussion there were several topics I found extremely interesting and I am currently organizing thoughts into a new potential direction.

Through a series of pieces the next stage of the project could be described; The pieces are to include highly specific films each accompanied by an illustration/drawing, an object and text/poem/article. A balance between visual ambiguity and clarity could describe a narrative through each piece and altogether would form the story.

The proposal for now aims at focusing on ‘War’ as an apparatus for discussing new architectural aesthetics (purely War at its most beautiful and spectacular forms in contemporary media) and instead of the output being a narrative about warfare its phantasmagorical effects are used as a proxy for new narratives.

1. The Forever War

 

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In this way war phantasmagorias are to act as a framework for both commentary and design proposal within the context of a state of perpetual war and arguably one in which war or the military industrial complex are mothers/fathers of culture itslef.

2. It Is beautiful!

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War Is Beautiful – by David Shields David Shields analyzed over a decade s worth of front-page war photographs from The New York Times and came to a shocking conclusion: the photo-editing process of the paper of record, by way of pretty, heroic, and lavishly aesthetic image selection, pulls the wool over the eyes of its readers; Shields forces us to face not only the the media’s complicity in dubious and catastrophic military campaigns but our own as well. The mighty Times, far from being a check on governmental power, is in reality a massive amplifier for its dark forces by virtue of the way it aestheticizes warfare.

3. Brecht’s Primer in 3 steps

With Brecht’s work, re-readings by Walter Benjamin as well as subsequent reproductions of his War Primer, I aim to identify characteristics of theatricality/phantasmagoria (baroque effects) that are prevalent today and can become the crux to a language of aesthetics.

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Book by Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin Above Jospeh Goebbles is shown with a caption as he appeared in Brecht’s original War Primer but Bloomberg and Chanarin add a new dimension by overlaying a munch discussed photoshoped image of Iranian missiles over the Nazi chief of propaganda’s face

 

Oliver Laric ‘Versions’ – at 2:10 the missiles image shown collaged above Goebbles face is discussed.

4. War as Culture – Objects and Iconography

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The famous spectacle of the ‘Fly-By’ during major events over London is predominantly a parade of aerial military technologies where even commercial objects (concorde and later A380) become nationalist icons and int he case of the concorde produced as competition during a climate of war (Cold War)

5. ‘Punk’ as the Counter-culture to War:

Through music, fashion and the arts the counter-culture to political establishments is seen.

Punk aesthetics of the 70s and 80s are already dated, what would 21st Century Punk look like or Punk architecture?

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Evolution of war iconography, Robert Overweg 2011, Greenspon, Oliver Stone / Willem Dafoe, Call of duty black ops. The photo on the left taken by Greenspon during the Vietnam war features a soldier in an iconic and archetypical posture. It displays pain agony, possibly a call to god* all things the American public could relate to during the ongoing vietnam war, the assassination of Martin Luther King jr. and Robert Kennedy. This same posture was used as an inspiration for another iconic image. Oliver Stone featured Willem Dafoe on the cover and posters for the movie Platoon with the same iconic hands in the air, agony and a call to god can also be found in this posture. Oliver Stone adds a new cultural meaning to the image of Greenspon. The same posture and reference is yet again used but now in the game call of duty: black ops. During the first quarter of 2011 this was the best selling game of all-time in dollars on Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. The iconic posture once introduced to our popular culture by Greenspon went from subjective registration to critical movie icon to be used in a commercial computer game.

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Post-jury jubilation …

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Tony Blair and the famous Selfie montage which ended up in an exhibition at the Imperial War Museum.

 

Below the short film produced for the Jury:

Updates on overall direction and new ideas to come :)

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