IOCOSE art group have recently launched Drone Selfies, the second chapter of their In Times of Peace project that explores the life of a drone after war and terror. With Drone Selfies, IOCOSE imagines an alternative present where war is over, and drones – once surveillance devices par excellence – are deprived of the main reason for their existence, which is why they point their built-in cameras to mirrors in an act of vanity.
Indeed, what would a drone do if war and terror were over? Magazines such as Wired, or websites such as diydrones.com, would probably argue that drones can be used in everyday context. For example, drones can be applied to check the roof of a house or to deliver Amazon orders. However, this is still a very instrumental understanding of drones, one where drones are used for a specific purpose. Instead, IOCOSE intends to ask a different question: what will the life of a drone in times of peace be? What is the creative potential of a drone, apart from the things we could do with it? Drones of course do not have a ‘life’. But what if they did?
The expression ‘in times of peace’ is a reference to Paul Virilio’s theory of logistics.1 Virilio, quoting a text by the Pentagon from the late 1940s, notes how logistics was defined there as a procedure following which a nation’s potential is transferred to its armed forces, ‘in times of peace’ as in times of war. But what does it mean to live ‘in times of peace’? And what does it mean for a drone to live in such times? This is indeed a difficult question to answer, as we have no idea how we ourselves would live in times of peace, and what such times could possibly look like.
Drone Selfies will be exhibited at ‘030_2.0 arte da Brescia’, curated by Dario Bonetta and Fabio Paris.
Director of photography: Matteo Cattaruzzi
Virilio, P. & Lotringer, S. (1983) Pure War. Los Angeles: Semiotext(e) / Foreign Agents.
The group IOCOSE has been working in Italy and Europe since 2006. It organizes actions in order to subvert ideologies, practices and processes of identification and production of meanings. It uses pranks and hoaxes as tactical means, as joyful and sound tools. IOCOSE thinks about the streets, internet and word of mouth as a battlefield. Tactics such as mimesis and trickery are used to lead and delude the audience into a semantic pitfall.