In the second week at the VFL, I’ve been continuing modelling and printing for the final residency product, which should be completed next week.
I’ve also been looking at the ways in which drones manifest and are visualised, used and normalised in the world. (This is as good a time as any to note that I’m specifically interested in military drones, not the DIY type, quadrocopters, civilian drones etc - although there are clearly interesting connections to be articulated between these, and the designation of civilian is also problematic.)
These are some of the first images that got me interested in drones. They are photographs from anti-drone protests in Pakistan, credited where possible.
Via Veterans Today:
Protest in Hyderabad, via Demotix, also at the continued detention of Affia Siddiqui:
Via The Atlantic:
Protest march in Islamabad, via Drone Wars UK:
Later at (apparently) the same protest, via NYDailyNews:
With the exception of the third picture, these show effigies of drones, and two show those effigies being burned. It is rare these days to see technology burned in effigy.
Protestors in the US have also employed drone effigies, although without (to my knowledge) the burning.
Protestors in Syracuse, CA, via LA Times:
Protestors at Camp Douglas, WI, via VCNV:
Protestors at Obama Campaign HQ, Chicago via CBS:
Protestors at the White House, via TBIJ:
There is an emerging craft of the drone protest effigy.
At a recent art viewing, I encountered another type, this one by Vincent Romaniello
This in particular seems like a kind of a dream of a drone: a fever dream, such as is beginning to infect all of us.
Of course, there is also “Roger”, the drone Aaron built for SXSW (he later went in the pool):
Roger was recently mounted and displayed at the New Museum:
Italeri makes a 1:72 model of a Predator Drone, the only Airfix-type drone kit model I am aware of, as if to underscore, if it was not clear from the above selection, that the Predator is the ur-drone, the one which stands for all the others:
And you can also buy a fully-working RC model of a Reaper drone (incorrectly labelled, but there you go):
In Iran, thousands of toy drones have been manufactured to celebrate the downing of an RQ-70 Sentinel, possibly the only country where that aircraft is more celebrated than the Predator:
Fresh Metal sells die-cast drones on Amazon:
This toy Heron drone, provenance unknown, was won playing musical statues by a friend’s children:
There’s a range of fan-creations in LEGO too of course, such as this from Flickr user Maine:
And pseudo-lego like this Predator with Command unit from HM Armed Forces Toys:
Also included in this list, my own representations, predating the current run of 3D prints, including the Drone Shadows:
* * *
On a different note, I’ve also been looking at more photos on Flickr, as a side-effect of last week’s hunt for publicly-available imagery to convert into models. Here are three that particularly caught my eye.
Global Hawk by P.A.King:
MCAS Miramar Air Show 4 by Jun82
And ‘The Predator (“Pred”) A at the Miramar Air Show’ by The Lawlesses: